and Greek Scepticism

A Dissertation for the Degree of Doctor of in the University of Bern


Mary Mills Patrick

Cambridge Deighton Bel & Co. 1899 2


The following treatise on Sextus Empiricus and Greek Scepticism has been prepared to supply a need much felt in the English language by students of Greek philosophy. For while other schools of Greek philosophy have been exhaustively and critically discussed by English scholars, there are few sources of information available to the student who wishes to make himself familiar with the teachings of . The aim has been, accordingly, to give a concise presentation of Pyrrhonism in relation to its historical development and the Scepticism of the , with critical references to the French and German works existing on the subject. The time and manner of the connection of Sextus Empiricus with the Pyrrhonean School has also been discussed. In study of the works of Sextus, the Greek text of Immanuel Bekker, Berlin, 1842, has been used, with frequent consultation of the text of J.A. Fabricius, 1718, which was taken directly from the existing of the works of Sextus. References to Laertius and other ancient works have been carefully verified. The principal modern authors consulted are the following:

Ritter, Geschichte der Philosophie, II. Auf., Hamburg, 1836-38. Zeller, Philosophie der Griechen, III. Auf., Leipzig, 1879-89. Lewes, History of Philosophy, Vol. I., London, 1866. Ueberweg, History of Philosophy, IV. ed., translated by Morris, 1871. Brochard, Les Sceptiques Grecs, Paris, 1877. Brochard, Pyrrhon et le Scepticism Primitive, No. 5, Ribot's. Revue Phil., Paris, 1885. Saisset, Le Scepticism Aenésidème-Pascal-Kant, Paris, 1867. Chaignet, Histoire de la Psychologie des Grecs, Paris, 1887-90. Haas, Leben des Sextus Empiricus, Burghausen, 1882.


Natorp, Forschungen zur Geschichte des Erkenntnisproblems beiden Alten, Berlin, 1884. Hirzel, Untersuchungen zu 's philosophischen Schriften, Leipzig, 1877-83. Pappenheim, Erläuterung zu des Sextus Empiricus Pyrrhoneischen Grundzügen, Heidelberg, 1882. Pappenheim, Die Tropen der Greichischen Skeptiker, Berlin, 1885. Pappenheim, Lebensverhältnisse des Sextus Empiricus, Berlin, 1887. Pappenheim, Der angebliche Heraclitismus des Skeptikers Ainesidemos, Berlin, 1887. Pappenheim, Der Sitz der Schule der Griechischen Skeptiker, Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie, I. 1, S. 47, 1887. Maccoll, The Greek Sceptics from to Sextus, London, 1869.

My grateful acknowledgments are due to Professor Dr. Ludwig Stein, Professor of Philosophy in the University of Bern, for valuable assistance in relation to the plan of the work and advice in respect to the best authorities to be consulted, and for its final revision.



Chapter 1

The historical relations of Sextus Empiricus Introductory paragraph. –The name of Sextus Empiricus. His profession. – The time when he lived. – The place of his birth.--The seat of the Sceptical School while Sextus was at its head. –The character of the writings of Sextus Empiricus.

Chapter 2

The position and aim of pyrrhonic The subject-matter of the Hypotyposes. –The origin of Pyrrhonism.--The nomenclature of Pyrrhonism. – Its criterion. – Its aim. – epochê and ¢tarax…a.– The standpoint of Pyrrhonism.

Chapter 3

The sceptical tropes Origin of the name. –The ten Tropes of epochê. –The First . –The Second Trope. –The Third Trope. –The Fourth Trope.--The Fifth Trope. – The Sixth Trope. –The Seventh Trope. –The Eighth Trope. –The Ninth Trope. –The Tenth Trope. –The five Tropes of Agrippa. –The two Tropes. –The Tropes of against Aetiology.

Chapter 4

Aenesidemus and the philosophy of Statement of the problem. –The theory of Pappenheim. –The theory of Brochard. –Zeller's theory. –The theory of Ritter and Saisset. –The theory of Hirzel and Natorp. – Critical examination of the subject.

Chapter 5

Critical examination of pyrrhonism


Pyrrhonism and Pyrrho. – Pyrrhonism and the Academy. Strength and weakness of Pyrrhonism. –The subject-matter of the Hypotyposes. – The origin of Pyrrhonism. –The nomenclature of Pyrrhonism. – Its criterion. – Its aim: ™poc» and ¢tarax…a . –The standpoint of Pyrrhonism.


Chapter 1

The Historical Relations of Sextus Empiricus

Interest has revived in the works of Sextus Empiricus in recent times, especially, one may say, since the date of Herbart. There is much in the writings of Sextus that finds a parallel in the methods of modern philosophy. There is a common starting-point in the study of the power and limitations of human thought. There is a common desire to investigate the phenomena of sense-perception, and the genetic relations of man to the lower animals, and a common interest in the theory of human . While, however, some of the pages of Sextus' works would form a possible introduction to certain lines of modern philosophical thought, we cannot carry the analogy farther, for Pyrrhonism as a whole lacked the essential element of all philosophical progress, which is a in the possibility of finding and establishing the in the subjects investigated. Before beginning a critical study of the writings of Sextus Empiricus, and the light which they throw on the development of Greek Scepticism, it is necessary to make ourselves somewhat familiar with the environment in which he lived and wrote. We shall thus be able to comprehend more fully the standpoint from which he regarded philosophical questions. Let us accordingly attempt to give some details of his life, including his profession, the time when he lived, the place of his birth, the country in which he taught, and the general aim and character of his works. Here, however, we encounter great difficulties, for although we possess most of the writings of Sextus well preserved, the evidence which

7 they provide on the points mentioned is very slight. He does not give us biographical details in regard to himself, nor does he refer to his contemporaries in a way to afford any exact knowledge of them. His name even furnishes us with a problem impossible of solution. He is called Sšxtoj Ð ™mpeirikÒj by Diogenes Laertius1: `HrodÒtou d di»kouse Sšxtoj Ð ™mpeirikÒj oá kaˆ t¦ dška tîn skeptikîn kaˆ ¥lla k£llista' Sšxtou d di»kouse Satorn‹noj Ð KuqÁnaj, ™mpeirikÒj kaˆ aÙtÒj. Although in this passage Diogenes speaks of Sextus the second time without the surname, we cannot understand the meaning otherwise than that Diogenes considered Sextus a physician of the Empirical School. Other evidence also is not wanting that Sextus bore this surname. Fabricius, in his edition of the works of Sextus, quotes from the Tabella de Sectis Medicorum of Lambecius the statement that Sextus was called Empiricus because of his position in medicine2. Pseudo- also refers to him as one of the directors of the Empirical School, and calls him Sšxtoj Ð ™mpeirikÒj3 His name is often found in the manuscripts written with the surname, as for example at the end of II4. In other places it is found written without the surname, as Fabricius testifies, where Sextus is mentioned as a Sceptic in connection with Pyrrho. The Sceptical School was long closely connected with the Empirical School of medicine, and the later Pyrrhoneans, when they were physicians, as was often the case, belonged for the most part to this school. Menedotus of Nicomedia is the first Sceptic, however, who is formally spoken of as an

1 Diog. Laert. IX. 12, 116. 2 Fabricius Testimonia, p. 2. 3 Pseudo-Galen Isag. 4; Fabricius Testimonia, p. 2. 4 Bekker Math. VIII. 481.


Empirical physician,5 and his contemporary Theodas of Laodicea was also an Empirical physician. The date of Menedotus and Theodas is difficult to fix, but Brochard and Hass agree that it was about 150 A.D.6 After the time of these two physicians, who were also each in turn at the head of the Sceptical School,7 there seems to have been a definite alliance between Pyrrhonism and in medicine, and we have every to believe that this alliance existed until the time of Sextus. The difficulty in regard to the name arises from Sextus' own testimony. In the first book of the Hypotyposes he takes strong ground against the identity of Pyrrhonism and Empiricism in medicine. Although he introduces his objections with the admission that “some say that they are the same,” in recognition of the close union that had existed between them, he goes on to say that “Empiricism is neither Scepticism itself, nor would it suit the Sceptic to take that sect upon himself”,8 for the reason that Empiricism maintains dogmatically the impossibility of knowledge, but he would prefer to belong to the Methodical School, which was the only medical school worthy of the Sceptic. “For this alone of all the medical sects, does not proceed rashly it seems to me, in regard to unknown things, and does not presume to say whether they are comprehensible or not, but it is guided by phenomena.9 It will thus be seen that the Methodical School of medicine has a certain relationship to Scepticism which is closer than that of the other medical sects.”10

5 Diog. IX. 12, 115. 6 Brochard Op. cit. Livre IV. p. 311. 7 Diog. IX. 12, 116. 8 Hyp. I. 236. 9 Hyp. I. 237. 10 Hyp. I. 241.


We know from the testimony of Sextus himself that he was a physician. In one case he uses the first person for himself as a physician,11 and in another he speaks of as “the founder of our science,”12 and all his illustrations show a breadth and variety of medical knowledge that only a physician could possess. He published a medical work which he refers to once as „atrik¦ Øpomn»mata,13 and again as ™mpeirik¦ Øpomn»mata.14 These passages probably refer to the same work,15 which, unfortunately for the solution of the difficult question that we have in hand, is lost, and nothing is known of its contents. In apparent contradiction to his statement in Hypotyposes I., that Scepticism and Empiricism are opposed to each other, in that Empiricism denies the possibility of knowledge, and Scepticism makes no dogmatic statements of any kind, Sextus classes the Sceptics and Empiricists together in another instance, as regarding knowledge as impossible16 ¢ll' oƒ mšn fasin aÙt¦ m¾ katalamb£nesqai, éster oƒ ¢pÕ tÁj ™mpeir…aj „atroˆ kaˆ oƒ ¢pÕ tÁj skšyewj filÒsofoi. In another case, on the contrary, he contrasts the Sceptics sharply with the Empiricists in regard to the ¢pÒdeixeij.17 oƒ d ™mpeirikoˆ ¢nairoàsin, oƒ d skeptikoˆ ™n ™pocÍ taÚthn ™fÚlaxan. Pappenheim thinks that Sextus belonged to the Methodical School, both from his strong expression in favor of that school in Hyp. I. 236, as above, and also because many of his medical opinions, as found in his works, agree with the

11 Hyp. II. 238. 12 Adv. Math. A. 260. 13 Adv. Math. vii. 202. 14 Adv. Math. A. 61. 15 Zeller Op. cit.. iii. 43. 16 Adv. Math. viii. 191. 17 Adv. Math. VIII. 328.

10 teachings of the Methodical School, more nearly than with those of the Empiricists. Pappenheim also claims that we find no inconsistency with this view in the passage given where Sextus classes the Sceptics with the Empiricists, but considers that statement an instance of carelessness in expressing himself, on the part of Sextus.18 The position of Pappenheim is assailable for the reason that in dealing with any problem regarding an author on the basis of internal evidence, we have no right to consider one of his statements worthy of weight, and another one unworthy, on the supposition that he expressed himself carelessly in the second instance. Rather must we attempt to find his true standpoint by fairly meeting all the difficulties offered in apparently conflicting passages. This has been attempted by Zeller, Brochard, Natorp and others, with the general result that all things considered they think without doubt that Sextus belonged to the Empirical School.19 His other references are too strong to allow his fidelity to it to be doubted. He is called one of the leaders of Empiricism by Pseudo-Galen, and his only medical work bore the title ™mpeirik¦ Øpomn»mata. The opinion of the writers above referred to is that the passage which we have quoted from the Hypotyposes does not necessarily mean that Sextus was not an Empiricist, but as he was more of a Sceptic than a physician, he gave preference to those doctrines that were most consistent with Scepticism, and accordingly claimed that it was not absolutely necessary that a Sceptic physician should be an Empiricist. Natorp considers that the different standpoint from which Sextus judges the Empirical and Methodical Schools in his different works is accounted for on

18 Lebensverhältnisse des Sex. Em. 36. 19 Brochard Op. cit. Livre IV. 317; Zeller Op. cit. III. 15; Natorp Op. cit. p. 155.

11 the supposition that he was an Empiricist, but disagreed with that school on the one point only.20 Natorp points out that Sextus does not speak more favourably of the medical stand of the Methodical School, but only compares the way in which both schools regarded the question of the possibility of knowledge, and thinks that Sextus could have been an Empiricist as a physician notwithstanding his condemnation of the attitude of the Empirical School in relation to the theory of knowledge. This difference between the two schools was a small one, and on a subtle and unimportant point; in fact, a difference in philosophical theory, and not in medical practice. While we would agree with the authors above referred to, that Sextus very probably recognized the bond between the Empirical School of medicine and Pyrrhonism, yet to make his possible connection with that school the explanation of his name, gives him more prominence as a physician than is consistent with what we know of his career. The long continued union of Empiricism and Scepticism would naturally support the view that Sextus was, at least during the earlier part of his life, a physician of that school, and yet it may be that he was not named Empiricus for that reason. There is one instance in ancient writings where Empiricus is known as a simple proper name.21 It may have been a proper name in Sextus' case, or there are many other ways in which it could have originated, as those who have studied the origin of names will readily grant, perhaps indeed, from the title of the above-named work, ™mpeirik¦ Øpomn»mata. The chief argument for this view of the case is that there were other leaders of the Sceptical School, for whom we can claim far

20 Natorp Op. cit. 157. 21 Pappenheim Leb. Ver. Sex. Em. 6.

12 greater influence as Empiricists than for Sextus, and for whom the surname Empiricus would have been more appropriate, if it was given in consequence of prominence in the Empirical School. Sextus is known to the world as a Sceptic, and not as a physician. He was classed in later times with Pyrrho, and his philosophical works survived, while his medical writings did not, but are chiefly known from his own mention of them. Moreover, the passage which we have quoted from the Hypotyposes is too strong to allow us easily to believe that Sextus remained all his life a member of the Empirical School. He could hardly have said, “Nor would it suit the Sceptic to take that sect upon himself,” if he at the same time belonged to it. His other references to the Empirical School, of a more favorable character, can be easily explained on the ground of the long continued connection which had existed between the two schools. It is quite possible to suppose that Sextus was an Empiricist a part of his life, and afterwards found the Methodical School more to his liking, and such a change would not in any way have affected his stand as a physician. In regard to the exact time when Sextus Empiricus lived, we gain very little knowledge from internal evidence, and outside sources of information are equally uncertain. Diogenes Laertius must have been a generation younger than Sextus, as he mentions the disciple of Sextus, Saturninus, as an Empirical physician.22 The time of Diogenes is usually estimated as the first half of the third century A.D.,23 therefore Sextus cannot be brought forward later than the beginning of the century. Sextus, however, directs his writings entirely against the Dogmatics, by whom he

22 Diog. IX. 12, 116. 23 Ueberweg Hist. of Phil. p. 21.

13 distinctly states that he means the Stoics,24 and the influence of the Stoics began to decline in the beginning of the third century A.D. A fact often used as a help in fixing the date of Sextus is his mention of the Stoic,25 ¢ll¦ kaˆ oƒ stwiko…, æj oƒ perˆ tÕn Basile…dhn. This Basilides was supposed to be identical with one of the teachers of .26 This is accepted by Zeller in the second edition of his History of Philosophy, but not in the third for the reason that Sextus, in all the work from which this reference is taken, i.e. Math. VII.-XI., mentions no one besides Aenesidemus, who lived later than the middle of the last century B.C27 The Basilides referred to by Sextus may be one mentioned in a list of twenty Stoics, in a fragment of Diogenes Laertius, recently published in Berlin by Val Rose.28 Too much importance has, however, been given to the relation of the mention of Basilides the Stoic to the question of the date of Sextus. Even if the Basilides referred to by Sextus is granted to have been the teacher of Marcus Aurelius, it only serves to show that Sextus lived either at the same time with Marcus Aurelius or after him, which is a conclusion that we must in any case reach for other . The fact that has caused the greatest in regard to the date of Sextus is that Galen in his works mentions several Sceptics who were also physicians of the Empirical School,29 and often speaks of , supposed to be identical with the teacher of Sextus given by Diogenes Laertius,30 but makes no reference whatever to

24 Hyp. I. 65. 25 Adv. Math. VII. 258. 26 Fabricius Vita Sexti. 27 Zeller Op. cit. III. 8. 28 Brochard Op. cit. IV. 315. 29 Zeller, III. 7. 30 Diog. XI. 12, 116.


Sextus. As Galen's time passes the limit of the second century A.D., we must either infer that Sextus was not the well-known physician that he was stated to be by Pseudo-Galen, and consequently not known to Galen, or that Galen wrote before Sextus became prominent as a Sceptic. This silence on the part of Galen in regard to Sextus increases the doubt, caused by Sextus' own criticism of the Empirical School of medicine, as to his having been an Empiricist. The question is made more complicated, as it is difficult to fix the identity of the Herodotus so often referred to by Galen.31 As Galen died about 200 A.D. at the age of seventy,32 we should fix the date of Sextus early in the third century, and that of Diogenes perhaps a little later than the middle, were it not that early in the third century the Stoics began to decline in influence, and could hardly have excited the warmth of animosity displayed by Sextus. We must then suppose that Sextus wrote at the very latter part of the second century, and either that Galen did not know him, or that Galen's books were published before Sextus became prominent either as a physician or as a Sceptic. The fact that he may have been better known as the latter than as the former does not sufficiently account for Galen's silence, as other Sceptics are mentioned by him of less importance than Sextus, and the latter, even if not as great a physician as Pseudo-Galen asserts, was certainly both a Sceptic and a physician, and must have belonged to one of the two medical schools so thoroughly discussed by Galen – either the Empirical or the Methodical. Therefore, if Sextus were a contemporary of Galen, he was so far removed from the circle of Galen's acquaintances as to have made no impression upon him, either as a Sceptic or a physician, a

31 Pappenheim Lebens. Ver. Sex. Em. 30. 32 Zeller Grundriss der Ges. der Phil. p. 260.

15 supposition that is very improbable. We must then fix the date of Sextus late in the second century, and conclude that the climax of his public career was reached after Galen had finished those of his writings which are still extant. Sextus has a name, but he was a Greek; we know this from his own statement.33 We also know that he must have been a Greek from the beauty and facility of his style, and from his acquaintance with Greek dialects. The place of his birth can only, however, be conjectured, from arguments indirectly derived from his writings. His constant references throughout his works to the minute customs of different nations ought to give us a clue to the solution of this question, but strange to say they do not give us a decided one. Of these references a large number, however, relate to the customs of Libya, showing a minute knowledge in regard to the political and religious customs of this land that he displays in regard to no other country except Egypt.34 Fabricius thinks Libya was not his birth place because of a reference which he makes to it in the Hypotyposes – Qrvkîn d kaˆ GaitoÚlwn (LibÚwn d œqnoj toàto).35 This conclusion is, however, entirely unfounded, as the explanation of Sextus simply shows that the people whom he was then addressing were not familiar with the nations of Libya. Suidas speaks of two men called Sextus, one from Chæronea and one from Libya, both of whom he calls Sceptics, and to one of whom he attributes Sextus' books. All authorities agree in asserting that great confusion exists in the works of Suidas; and Fabricius, Zeller, and Pappenheim place no weight upon this testimony

33 Adv. Math. A. 246; Hyp. I. 152; Hyp. III. 211, 214. 34 Haas Op. cit. p. 10. 35 Hyp. III. 213.

16 of Suidas.36 Haas, however, contends37 that it is unreasonable to suppose that this confusion could go as far as to attribute the writings of Sextus Empiricus to Sextus of Chæronea, and also make the latter a Sceptic, and he considers it far more reasonable to accept the testimony of Suidas, as it coincides so well with the internal evidence of Sextus' writings in regard to his native land. It is nevertheless evident, from his familiarity with the customs, language, and laws of , and , that he must have resided at some time in each of these cities. Of all the problems connected with the historical details of the life of Sextus, the one that is the most difficult of solution, and also the most important for our present purpose of making a critical study of his teaching, is to fix the seat of the Sceptical School during the time that he was in charge of it. The Hypotyposes are lectures delivered in public in that period of his life. Where then were they delivered? We know that the Sceptical School must have had a long continued existence as a definite philosophical movement, although some have contended otherwise. The fact of its existence as an organized direction of thought, is demonstrated by its formulated teachings, and the list given by Diogenes Laertius of its principal leaders,38 and by references from the writings of Sextus. In the first book of Hypotyposes he refers to Scepticism as a distinct system of philosophy, kaˆ t¾n di£krisin tÁj skšyewj ¢pÕ tîn

36 Pappenheim Lebens. Ver. Sex. Em. 5, 22; Zeller Op. cit. III. 39; Fabricius Vita de Sextus. 37 Haas Op. cit. p. 6. 38 Diog. XI. 12, 115, 116.

17 parakeimšnon aÙtÍ filosofiîn.39 He speaks also of the older Sceptics,40 and the later Sceptics.41 Pyrrho, the founder of the school, taught in Elis, his native village; but even as early as the time of Timon, his immediate follower, his teachings were somewhat known in Alexandria, where Timon for a while resided.42 The immediate disciples of Timon, as given by Diogenes, were not men known in or mentioned in Greek writings. Then we have the well-known testimony of Aristocles the Peripatetic in regard to Aenesidemus, that he taught Pyrrhonism in Alexandria43 – ™cqj kaˆ prèhn ™n 'Alexandre…v tÍ kat' A‡gupton Aˆnhs…dhmÒj tij ¢nazwpure‹n ½rxato tÕn Ûqlon toîton. This was after the dogmatic tendency of the Academy under Antiochus and his followers had driven Pyrrhonism from the partial union with the Academy, which it had experienced after the breaking up of the school under the immediate successors of Timon. Aenesidemus taught about the time of our era in Alexandria, and established the school there anew; and his followers are spoken of in a way that presupposes their continuing in the same place. There is every reason to think that the connection of Sextus with Alexandria was an intimate one, not only because Alexandria had been for so long a time the seat of Pyrrhonism, but also from internal evidence from his writings and their subsequent historical influence; and yet the Hypotyposes could not have been delivered in Alexandria, as he often refers to that place in comparison with the place where he was then speaking. He

39 Hyp. I. 5. 40 Hyp. I. 36. 41 Hyp. I. 164. 42 Chaignet Op. cit. 45. 43 Aristocles of Euseb. Praep. Ev. XIV. E. 446.

18 says, furthermore, that he teaches in the same place where his master taught.44 blšpwn te Óti œnqa Ð Øfhght¾j Ð ™mÕj dielšgeto, ™ntaàqa ™gë nàn dialšgomai. Therefore the school must have been removed from Alexandria, in or before the time of the teacher of Sextus, to some other centre. The Hypotyposes are from beginning to end a direct attack on the Dogmatics; therefore Sextus must have taught either in some city where the dogmatic philosophy was strong, or in some rival philosophical centre. The Hypotyposes show also that the writer had access to some large library. Alexandria, Rome and Athens are the three places the most probable for selection for such a purpose. For whatever reason the seat of the school was removed from Alexandria by the master of Sextus, or by himself, from the place where it had so long been united with the Empirical School of medicine, Athens would seem the most suitable city for its recontinuance, in the land where Pyrrhonism first had its birth. Sextus, however, in one instance, in referring to things invisible because of their outward relations, says in illustration, “as the city of Athens is invisible to us at present.”45 In other places also he contrasts the Athenians with the people whom he is addressing, equally with the Alexandrians, thus putting Athens as well as Alexandria out of the question. Of the different writers on Sextus Empiricus, those who have treated this part of the subject most critically are Haas and Pappenheim. We will therefore consider, somewhat at length, the results presented by these two authors. Haas thinks that the Hypotyposes were delivered in Rome for the following reasons. Sextus' lectures must have been given in some centre of philosophical schools and of learning. He

44 Hyp. III. 120. 45 Hyp. II. 98.

19 never opposes Roman relations to those of the place where he is speaking, as he does in regard to Athens and Alexandria. He uses the name “Romans” only three times,46 once comparing them to the Rhodians, once to the Persians, and once in general to other nations.47 In the first two of these references, the expression “among the Romans” in the first part of the antithesis is followed by the expression, “among us,” in the second part, which Haas understands to be synonymous. The third reference is in regard to a Roman law, and the use of the word 'Roman' does not at all show that Sextus was not then in Rome. The character of the laws referred to by Sextus as par' ¹m‹n shows that they were always Roman laws, and his definition of law48 is especially a definition of Roman law. This argument might, it would seem, apply to any part of the Roman Empire, but Haas claims that the whole relation of law to custom as treated of by Sextus, and all his statements of customs forbidden at that time by law, point to Rome as the place of his residence. Further, Haas considers the Herodotus mentioned by Galen49 as a prominent physician in Rome, to have been the predecessor and master of Sextus, in whose place Sextus says that he is teaching.50 Haas also thinks that Sextus' refutation of the identity of Pyrrhonism with Empiricism evidently refers to a paragraph in Galen's Subfiguratio Empirica,51 which would be natural if the Hypotyposes were written shortly after Galen's Sub. Em., and in the same place. Further, Hippolytus, who wrote in or near Rome very soon after the time of Sextus, apparently used the Hypotyposes, which

46 Haas Op. cit. p. 15. 47 Hyp. I. 149, 152; III. 211. 48 Hyp. I. 146. 49 Galen de puls. IV. 11; Bd. VIII. 751. 50 Hyp. III. 120. 51 Galen Sub. Em. 123 B-126 D. (Basileae, 1542).

20 would be more natural if he wrote in the same place. According to Haas, every thing in internal evidence, and outward testimony, points to Rome as having been the city where Sextus occupied his position as the head of the Sceptical School. Coming now to the position of Pappenheim on this subject, we find that he takes very decided ground against the seat of the Sceptical School having been in Rome, even for a short time, in his latest publication regarding it.52 This opinion is the result of late study on the part of Pappenheim, for in his work on the Lebensverhältnisse des Sextus Empiricus Berlin 1875, he says, “Dass Herodotus in Rom lebte sagt Galen. Vermuthlich auch Sextus.” His reasons given in the later article for not connecting the Sceptical School at all with Rome are as follows. He finds no proof of the influence of Scepticism in Rome, as Cicero remarks that Pyrrhonism is extinct,53 and he also gives weight to the well- known sarcastic saying of Seneca, Quis est qui tradat praecepta Pyrrhonis!54 While Haas claims that Sextus would naturally seek one of the centres of dogmatism, in order most effectively to combat it, Pappenheim, on the contrary, contends that it would have been foolishness on the part of Sextus to think of starting the Sceptical School in Rome, where was the favored philosophy of the Roman Emperors; and when either for the possible reason of strife between the Empirical and Methodical Schools, or for some other cause, the Pyrrhonean School was removed from Alexandria, Pappenheim claims that all testimony points to the conclusion that it was founded in some city of the East.

52 Pappenheim Sitz der Skeptischen Schule. Archiv für Geschichte der Phil. 1888. 53 Cicero De Orat. III. 17, 62. 54 Seneca nat. qu. VII. 32. 2.


The name of Sextus is never known in Roman , but in the East, on the contrary, literature speaks for centuries of Sextus and Pyrrho. The Hypotyposes, especially, were well- known in the East, and references to Sextus are found there in philosophical and religious dogmatic writings. The Emperor makes use of the works of Sextus, and he is frequently quoted by the Church Fathers of the Eastern Church.55 Pappenheim accordingly concludes that the seat of Pyrrhonism after the school was removed from Alexandria, was in some unknown city of the East. In estimating the weight of these arguments, we must accept with Pappenheim the close connection of Pyrrhonism with Alexandria, and the subsequent influence which it exerted upon the literature of the East. All historical relations tend to fix the permanent seat of Pyrrhonism, after its separation from the Academy, in Alexandria. There is nothing to point to its removal from Alexandria before the time of Menodotus, who is the teacher of Herodotus,56 and for many reasons to be considered the real teacher of Sextus. It was Menodotus who perfected the Empirical doctrines, and who brought about an official union between Scepticism and Empiricism, and who gave Pyrrhonism in great measure, the éclat that it enjoyed in Alexandria, and who appears to have been the most powerful influence in the school, from the time of Aenesidemus to that of Sextus. Furthermore, Sextus' familiarity with Alexandrian customs bears the imprint of original knowledge, and he cannot, as Zeller implies, be accepted as simply quoting. One could hardly agree with Zeller,57 that the familiarity shown by Sextus with the customs of both Alexandria and Rome in the Hypotyposes

55 Fabricius de Sexto Empirico Testimonia. 56 Diog. IX. 12, 116. 57 Zeller Op. cit. III. p. 39.

22 does not necessarily show that he ever lived in either of those places, because a large part of his works are compilations from other books; but on the contrary, the careful reader of Sextus' works must find in all of them much evidence of personal knowledge of Alexandria, Athens and Rome. A part of Sextus' books also may have been written in Alexandria. PrÕj fusikoÝj could have been written in Alexandria.58 If these were also lectures, then Sextus taught in Alexandria as well as elsewhere. The history of Eastern literature for the centuries immediately following the time of Sextus, showing as it does in so many instances the influence of Pyrrhonism, and a knowledge of the Hypotyposes, furnishes us with an incontestable proof that the school could not have been for a long time removed from the East, and the absence of such knowledge in Roman literature is also a strong argument against its long continuance in that city. It would seem, however, from all the data at command, that during the years that the Sceptical School was removed from Alexandria, its head quarters were in Rome, and that the Pyrrhonean Hypotyposes were delivered in Rome. Let us briefly consider the arguments in favour of such a hypothesis. Scepticism was not unknown in Rome. Pappenheim quotes the remark of Cicero that Pyrrhonism was long since dead, and the sarcasm of Seneca, Quis est qui tradat praecepta Pyrrhonis? as an argument against the knowledge of Pyrrhonism in Rome. We must remember, however, that in Cicero's time Aenesidemus had not yet separated himself from the Academy; or if we consider the Lucius Tubero to whom Aenesidemus dedicated his works, as the same Lucius Tubero who was the friend of Cicero in his youth, and

58 Pappenheim Sitz der Skeptischen Schule; Archiv für Geschichte der Phil., 1888; Adv. Math. X. 15, 95.

23 accordingly fix the date of Aenesidemus about 50 B.C.,59 even then Aenesidemus' work in Alexandria was too late to have necessarily been known to Cicero, whose remark must have been referred to the old school of Scepticism. Should we grant, however, that the statements of Cicero and Seneca prove that in their time Pyrrhonism was extinct in Rome, they certainly do not show that after their death it could not have again revived, for the Hypotyposes were delivered more than a century after the death of Seneca. There are very few writers in Aenesidemus' own time who showed any influence of his teachings.60 This influence was felt later, as Pyrrhonism became better known. That Pyrrhonism received some attention in Rome before the time of Sextus is nevertheless demonstrated by the teachings of Favorinus there. Although Favorinus was known as an Academician, the title of his principal work was toÝj filosofoumšnouj aÙtù tîn lÒgwn, ïn ¥ristoi oƒ Pu¸·èneioi.61 Suidas calls Favorinus a great author and learned in all science and philosophy,62 and Favorinus made Rome the centre of his teaching and writing. His date is fixed by Zeller at 80-150 A.D., therefore Pyrrhonism was known in Rome shortly before the time of Sextus. The whole tone of the Hypotyposes, with the constant references to the Stoics as living present opponents, shows that these lectures must have been delivered in one of the centres of Stoicism. As Alexandria and Athens are out of the question, all testimony points to Rome as having been the seat of the Pyrrhonean School, for at least a part of the time that Sextus was at its head. We would then accept the teacher of

59 Zeller Op. cit. III. 10. 60 Zeller Op. cit. p. 63. 61 Zeller Op. cit. p. 67. 62 Brochard Op. cit. 329.


Sextus, in whose place he says he taught, as the Herodotus so often referred to by Galen63 who lived in Rome. Sextus' frequent references to Asclepiades, whom he mentions ten different times by name in his works,64 speak in favour of Rome in the matter under discussion, as Asclepiades made that city one of the centres of medical culture. On the other hand, the fact that there is no trace of the Hypotyposes in later Roman literature, with the one exception of the works of Hippolytus, as opposed to the wide-spread knowledge of them shown in the East for centuries, is incontestable historical proof that the Sceptical School could not long have had its seat at Rome. From the two passages given above from Sextus' work against physics, he must either have written that book in Alexandria, it would seem, or have quoted those passages from some other work. May we not then conclude, that Sextus was at the head of the school in Rome for a short time, where it may have been removed temporarily, on account of the difficulty with the Empiricists, implied in Hyp. I. 236-241, or in order to be better able to attack the Stoics, but that he also taught in Alexandria, where the real home of the school was certainly found? There it probably came to an end about fifty years after the time of Sextus, and from that centre the Sceptical works of Sextus had their wide-spread influence in the East. The books of Sextus Empiricus furnish us with the best and fullest presentation of ancient Scepticism which has been preserved to modern times, and give Sextus the position of one of the greatest men of the Sceptical School. His works which are still extant are the Pyrrhonean Hypotyposes in three volumes, and the two works comprising eleven books which

63 Galen VIII. 751. 64 Bekker Index.

25 have been united in later times under the title of prÕj maqhmatikoÚj, one of which is directed against the sciences in general, and the other against the dogmatic . The six books composing the first of these are written respectively against grammarians, rhetoricians, geometricians, arithmeticians, astronomers and musicians. The five books of the latter consist of two against the logicians, two against physics, and one against systems of morals. If the last short work of the first book directed against the arithmeticians is combined with the one preceding against the geometricians, as it well could be, the two works together would be divided into ten different parts; there is evidence to show that in ancient times such a division was made.65 There were two other works of Sextus which are now lost, the medical work before referred to, and a book entitled perˆ yucÁj. The character of the extant works of Sextus is similar, as they are all directed either against science or against the dogmatics, and they all present the negative side of Pyrrhonism. The vast array of arguments comprising the subject-matter, often repeated in the same and different forms, are evidently taken largely from the Sceptical works which Sextus had resource to, and are, in fact, a summing up of all the wisdom of the Sceptical School. The style of these books is fluent, and the Greek reminds one of and Thucydides, and although Sextus does not claim originality, but presents in all cases the arguments of the Sceptic, yet the illustrations and the form in which the arguments are presented, often bear the marks of his own thought, and are characterized here and there by a wealth of humor that has not been sufficiently noticed in the critical works on Sextus. Of all the authors who have

65 Diog. IX. 12, 116.

26 reviewed Sextus, Brochard is the only one who seems to have understood and appreciated his humorous side. We shall now proceed to the consideration of the general position and aim of Pyrrhonism.


Chapter II

The Position and Aim of Pyrrhonism

The first volume of the Pyrrhonean Hypotyposes gives the most complete statement found in any of the works of Sextus Empiricus of the teachings of Pyrrhonism and its relation to other schools of philosophy. The chief source of the subject-matter presented is a work of the same name by Aenesidemus,66 either directly used by Sextus, or through the writings of those who followed Aenesidemus. The comprehensive title Pu¸·èneioi Øpotupèseij was very probably used in general to designate courses of lectures given by the leaders of the Sceptical School. In the opening chapters of the Hypotyposes Sextus undertakes to define the position and aim of Pyrrhonism.67 In introducing his subject he treats briefly of the differences between philosophical schools, dividing them into three classes; those which claim that they have found the truth, like the schools of and and the Stoics; those which deny the possibility of finding it, like that of the Academicians; and those that still seek it, like the Sceptical School. The accusation against the Academicians, that they denied the possibility of finding the truth, was one that the Sceptics were very fond of making. We shall discuss the justice of it later, simply remarking here, that to affirm the “incomprehensibility of the unknown,” was a form of expression that the Pyrrhonists themselves were sometimes betrayed into, notwithstanding their careful avoidance of dogmatic statements.68 After defining the three kinds of philosophy as the Dogmatic, the Academic and the Sceptic, Sextus reminds his hearers

66 Diog. IX. 11, 78. 67 Hyp. I. 3, 4. 68 Adv. Math. VIII. 191.

28 that he does not speak dogmatically in anything that he says, but that he intends simply to present the Sceptical arguments historically, and as they appear to him. He characterizes his treatment of the subject as general rather than critical, including a statement of the character of Scepticism, its idea, its principles, its manner of reasoning, its criterion and aim, and a presentation of the Tropes, or aspects of doubt, and the Sceptical formulae and the distinction between Scepticism and the related schools of philosophy.69 The result of all the gradual changes which the development of thought had brought about in the outward relations of the Sceptical School, was to increase the earnestness of the claim of the Sceptics to be simply followers of Pyrrho, the great founder of the movement. In discussing the names given to the Sceptics, Sextus gives precedence very decidedly to the title “Pyrrhonean,” because Pyrrho appears the best representative of Scepticism, and more prominent than all who before him occupied themselves with it.70 It was a question much discussed among philosophers in ancient times, whether Pyrrhonism should be considered a philosophical sect or not. Thus we find that Hippobotus in his work entitled perˆ aƒršsewn, written shortly before our era, does not include Pyrrhonism among the other sects.71 Diogenes himself, after some hesitation remarking that many do not consider it a sect, finally decides to call it so.72 Sextus in discussing this subject calls Scepticism an ¢gwg», or a movement, rather than a a†resij, saying that Scepticism is not a sect, if that word implies a systematic arrangement of , for the Sceptic has no dogmas. If, however, a sect may mean simply the following of a certain system of reasoning according to what appears to be true, then Scepticism is a sect.73 From a quotation

69 Hyp. I. 5, 6. 70 Hyp. I. 7. 71 Diog. Pro. 19. 72 Diog. Pro. 20. 73 Hyp. I. 15, 17.

29 given later on by Sextus from Aenesidemus, we know that the latter used the term ¢gog».74 Sextus gives also the other titles, so well known as having been applied to Scepticism, namely, zhthtik», ™fektik», and ¢porhtik».75 The dÚnamij76 of Scepticism is to oppose the things of sense and intellect in every possible way to each other, and through the equal weight of things opposed, or „sosqšneia, to reach first the state of suspension of judgement, and afterwards , or “repose and tranquillity of soul.”77 The purpose of Scepticism is then the hope of ataraxia, and its origin was in the troubled state of mind induced by the inequality of things, and uncertainty in regard to the truth. Therefore, says Sextus, men of the greatest talent began the Sceptical system by placing in opposition to every argument an equal one, thus leading to a philosophical system without a , for the Sceptic claims that he has no dogma.78 The Sceptic is never supposed to state a decided opinion, but only to say what appears to him. Even the Sceptical formulae, such as “Nothing more,”79 or “I decide nothing,”80 or “All is false,” include themselves with other things. The only statements that the Sceptic can make, are in regard to his own sensations. He cannot deny that he is warm or cold or hungry. Sextus replies to the charge that the Sceptics deny phenomena by refuting it.81 The Sceptic does not deny phenomena, because they are the only criteria by which he can regulate his actions. “We call the criterion of the Sceptical School the phenomenon, meaning by this name the idea of it.”82 Phenomena are the only things which the Sceptic does not deny, and he guides his

74 Hyp. I. 210. 75 Hyp. I. 7; Diog. IX. 11, 70. 76 Hyp. I. 8. 77 Hyp. I. 10. 78 Hyp. I. 12. 79 Hyp. I. 14. 80 Hyp. I. 14. 81 Hyp. I. 19. 82 Hyp. I. 19.

30 life by them. They are, however, subjective. Sextus distinctly affirms that sensations are the phenomena,83 and that they lie in susceptibility and voluntary feeling, and that they constitute the appearances of objects.84 We see from this that Sextus makes the only reality to consist in subjective , but he does not follow this to its logical conclusion, and doubt the existence of anything outside of mind. He rather takes for granted that there is a something unknown outside, about which the Sceptic can make no assertions. Phenomena are the criteria according to which the Sceptic orders his daily life, as he cannot be entirely inactive, and they affect life in four different ways. They constitute the guidance of nature, the impulse of feeling; they give rise to the traditions of customs and laws, and make the teaching of the arts important.85 According to the tradition of laws and customs, piety is a good in daily life, but it is not in itself an abstract good. The Sceptic of Sextus' time also inculcated the teaching of the arts, as indeed must be the case with professing physicians, as most of the leading Sceptics were. Sextus says, “We are not without energy in the arts which we undertake.”86 This was a positive tendency which no philosophy, however negative, could escape, and the Sceptic tried to avoid inconsistency in this respect, by separating his philosophy from his theory of life. His philosophy controlled his opinions, and his life was governed by phenomena. The aim of Pyrrhonism was ataraxia in those things which pertain to opinion, and moderation in the things which life imposes.87 In other words, we find here the same natural desire of the human being to rise above and beyond the limitations which pain and passion impose, which is expressed in other forms, and under other names, in other schools of philosophy. The method, however,

83 Hyp. I. 22; Diog. IX. 11, 105. 84 Hyp. I. 22. 85 Hyp. I. 23. 86 Hyp. I. 24. 87 Hyp. I. 25.

31 by which ataraxia or peace of mind could be reached, was peculiar to the Sceptic. It is a state of psychological equilibrium, which results from the equality of the weight of different arguments that are opposed to each other, and the consequent impossibility of affirming in regard to either one, that it is correct.88 The discovery of ataraxia was, in the first instance, apparently accidental, for while the Sceptic withheld his opinion, unable to decide what things were true, and what things were false, ataraxia fortunately followed.89 After he had begun to philosophize, with a desire to discriminate in regard to ideas, and to separate the true from the false90 during the time of ™poc», or suspension of judgement, ataraxia followed as if by chance, as the shadow follows the body.91 The Sceptic in seeking ataraxia in the things of opinion, does not entirely escape from suffering from his sensations. He is not wholly undisturbed, for he is sometimes cold and hungry, and so on.92 He claims, nevertheless, that he suffers less than the dogmatist, who is beset with two kinds of suffering, one from the feelings themselves, and also from the conviction that they are by nature an evil.93 To the Sceptic nothing is in itself either an evil or a good, and so he thinks that “he escapes from difficulties easier.”94 For instance, he who considers riches a good in themselves, is unhappy in the loss of them, and in possession of them is in fear of losing them, while the Sceptic, remembering the Sceptical saying “No more,” is untroubled in whatever condition he may be found, as the loss of riches is no more an evil than the possession of them is a good.95 For he who considers anything good or bad by nature is always troubled, and when that which seemed good is not present

88 Hyp. I. 26. 89 Hyp. I. 26. 90 Diog. IX. 11, 107. 91 Hyp. I. 29. 92 Hyp. I. 30. 93 Hyp. I. 30. 94 Hyp. I. 30; Diog. IX. 11, 61. 95 Adv. Math. XI. 146-160.

32 with him, he thinks that he is tortured by that which is by nature bad, and follows after what he thinks to be good. Having acquired it, however, he is not at rest, for his reason tells him that a sudden change may deprive him of this thing that he considers a good.96 The Sceptic, however, endeavours neither to avoid nor seek anything eagerly.97 Ataraxia came to the Sceptic as success in painting the foam on a horse's mouth came to the painter. After many attempts to do this, and many failures, he gave up in despair, and threw the sponge at the picture that he had used to wipe the colors from the painting with. As soon as it touched the picture it produced a representation of the foam.98 Thus the Sceptics were never able to attain to ataraxia by examining the anomaly between the phenomena and the things of thought, but it came to them of its own accord just when they despaired of finding it. The intellectual preparation for producing ataraxia, consists in placing arguments in opposition to each other, both in regard to phenomena, and to things of the intellect. By placing the phenomenal in opposition to the phenomenal, the intellectual to the intellectual, and the phenomenal to the intellectual, and vice versa, the present to the present, past, and future, one will find that no argument exists that is incontrovertible. It is not necessary to accept any statement whatever as true, and consequently a state of ™poc» may always be maintained.99 Although ataraxia concerns things of the opinion, and must be preceded by the intellectual process described above, it is not itself a function of the intellect, or any subtle kind of reasoning, but seems to be rather a unique form of moral perfection, leading to happiness, or is itself happiness. It was the aim of Scepticism to know nothing, and to assert nothing in regard to any subject, but at the same time not to affirm

96 Hyp. I. 27. 97 Hyp. I. 28. 98 Hyp. I. 28, 29. 99 Hyp. I. 32-35.

33 that knowledge on all subjects is impossible, and consequently to have the attitude of still seeking. The standpoint of Pyrrhonism was materialistic. We find from the teachings of Sextus that he affirmed the non-existence of the soul,100 or the ego, and denied absolute existence altogether.101 The introductory statements of Diogenes regarding Pyrrhonism would agree with this standpoint.102 There is no criterion of truth in Scepticism. We cannot prove that the phenomena represent objects, or find out what the relation of phenomena to objects is. There is no criterion to tell us which one is true of all the different representations of the same object, and of all the varieties of sensation that arise through the many phases of relativity of the conditions which control the character of the phenomena. Every effort to find the truth can deal only with phenomena, and absolute reality can never be known.

100 Adv. Math. VII. 55; Hyp. II. 32. 101 Adv. Math. XI. 140. 102 Diog. IX. 11, 61.


Chapter III

The Sceptical Tropes

The exposition of the Tropes of Pyrrhonism constitutes historically and philosophically the most important part of the writings of Sextus Empiricus. These Tropes represent the sum total of the wisdom of the older Sceptical School, and were held in high respect for centuries, not only by the Pyrrhoneans, but also by many outside the narrow limits of that School. In the first book of the Hypotyposes Sextus gives two classes of Tropes, those of ™poc» and the eight Tropes of Aenesidemus against Aetiology. The Tropes of ™poc» are arranged in groups of ten, five and two, according to the period of the Sceptical School to which they belong; the first of these groups is historically the most important, or the Ten Tropes of ™poc», as these are far more closely connected with the general development of Scepticism, than the later ones. By the name trÒpoj or Trope, the Sceptic understood a manner of thought, or form of argument, or standpoint of judgement. It was a term common in Greek philosophy, used in this sense, from the time of Aristotle.103 The Stoics, however, used the word with a different meaning from that attributed to it by the Sceptics.104 Stephanus and Fabricius translate it by the Latin word modus105 and trÒpoj also is often used interchangeably with the word lÒgoj by Sextus, Diogenes Laertius, and others; sometimes also as synonymous with trÒpoj,106 and tÚpoj is found in the oldest edition of Sextus.107 Diogenes defines the word as the standpoint, or manner of argument, by which the Sceptics arrived at the condition of doubt, in

103 Pappenheim Erlauterung Pyrrh. Grundzugen, p. 35. 104 Diog I. 76; Adv. Math. VIII. 227. 105 Fabricius, Cap. XIV. 7. 106 Hyp. I. 36. 107 Fabricius on Hyp. I. 36; Cap. XIV. G.

35 consequence of the equality of probabilities, and he calls the Tropes, the ten Tropes of doubt.108 All writers on Pyrrhonism after the time of Aenesidemus give the Tropes the principal place in their treatment of the subject. Sextus occupies two thirds of the first book of the Hypotyposes in stating and discussing them; and about one fourth of his presentation of Scepticism is devoted to the Tropes by Diogenes. In addition to these two authors, Aristocles the Peripatetic refers to them in his attack on Scepticism.109 Favorinus wrote a book entitled Pyrrhonean Tropes, and Plutarch one called The Ten (tÒpoi) Tropes of Pyrrho.110 Both of these latter works are lost. All authorities unite in attributing to Aenesidemus the work of systematizing and presenting to the world the ten Tropes of ™poc». He was the first to conceive the project of opposing an organized philosophical system of Pyrrhonism to the dogmatism of his contemporaries.111 Moreover, the fact that Diogenes introduces the Tropes into his life of Pyrrho, does not necessarily imply that he considered Pyrrho their author, for Diogenes invariably combines the teachings of the followers of a movement with those of the founders themselves; he gives these Tropes after speaking of Aenesidemus' work entitled Pyrrhonean Hypotyposes, and apparently quotes from this book, in giving at least a part of his presentation of Pyrrhonism, either directly or through, the works of others. Nietzsche proposes a correction of the text of Diogenes IX. 11, 79, which would make him quote the Tropes from a book by Theodosius,112 author of a commentary on the works of Theodas. No writer of antiquity claims for the Tropes an older source than the books of Aenesidemus, to whom Aristocles also attributes them.113 They are not mentioned in Diogenes' life of Timon, the immediate

108 Diog. IX. 11, 79-108. 109 Aristocles Euseb. praep. ev. X. 14, 18. 110 Fabricius on Hyp. I. 36. 111 Compare Saisset Op. cit. p. 78. 112 Brochard Op. cit. 254, Note 4. 113 Aristocles Eus. praep. ev. XIV. 18. 8.

36 disciple of Pyrrho. Cicero has no knowledge of them, and does not refer to them in his discussion of Scepticism. Aenesidemus was undoubtedly the first to formulate these Tropes, but many things tend to show that they resulted, in reality, from the gradual classification of the results of the teachings of Pyrrho, in the subsequent development of thought from his own time to that of Aenesidemus. The ideas contained in the Tropes were not original with Aenesidemus, but are more closely connected with the thought of earlier times. The decidedly empirical character of the Tropes proves this connection, for the eight Tropes of Aetiology, which were original with Aenesidemus, bear a far stronger dialectic stamp, thus showing a more decided dialectic influence of the Academy than is found in the Tropes of ™poc». Many of the illustrations given of the Tropes also, testify to a time of greater antiquity than that of Aenesidemus. The name Trope was well known in ancient times, and the number ten reminds us of the ten opposing principles of , and the ten categories of Aristotle, the fourth of which was the same as the eighth Trope. The terminology, however, with very few exceptions, points to a later period than that of Pyrrho. Zeller points out a number of expressions in both Diogenes' and Sextus' exposition of the Tropes, which could not date back farther than the time of Aenesidemus.114 One of the most striking features of the whole presentation of the Tropes, especially as given by Sextus, is their mosaic character, stamping them not as the work of one person, but as a growth, and also an agglutinous growth, lacking very decidedly the symmetry of thought that the work of one mind would have shown. At the time of the separation of Pyrrhonism from the Academy, no other force was as strong in giving life to the school as the systematic treatment by Aenesidemus of the Ten Tropes of ™poc». The reason of this is evident. It was not that the ideas of the Sceptical Tropes were original with Aenesidemus, but because a

114 Zeller Op. cit. p. 25.

37 definite statement of belief is always a far more powerful influence than principles which are vaguely understood and accepted. There is always, however, the danger to the Sceptic, in making a statement even of the principles of Scepticism, that the psychological result would be a dogmatic tendency of mind, as we shall see later was the case, even with Aenesidemus himself. That the Sceptical School could not escape the accusation of dogmatizing, from the Dogmatics, even in stating the grounds of their Scepticism, we know from Diogenes.115 To avoid this dogmatic tendency of the ten Tropes, Sextus makes the frequent assertion that he does not affirm things to be absolutely true, but states them as they appear to him, and that they may be otherwise from what he has said.116 Sextus tells us that “Certain Tropes, ten in number, for producing the state of ™poc» have been handed down from the older Sceptics.”117 He refers to them in another work as the “Tropes of Aenesidemus.”118 There is no evidence that the substance of these Tropes was changed after the time of Aenesidemus, although many of the illustrations given by Sextus must have been of a later date, added during the two centuries that elapsed between the time of Aenesidemus and Sextus. In giving these Tropes Sextus does not claim to offer a systematic methodical classification, and closes his list of them, in their original concise form, with the remark, “We make this order ourselves.”119 The order is given differently by Diogenes, and also by Favorinus.120 The Trope which Sextus gives as the tenth is the fifth given by Diogenes, the seventh by Sextus is the eighth given by Diogenes, the fifth by Sextus, the seventh by Diogenes, the tenth by Diogenes, the eighth by Sextus. Diogenes says that the one he gives as the ninth Favorinus calls the eighth, and

115 Diog. IX. 11, 102. 116 Hyp. I. 4, 24. 117 Hyp. I. 36. 118 Adv. Math. VII. 345. 119 Hyp. I. 38. 120 Diog. IX. 11, 87.


Sextus and Aenesidemus the tenth. This statement does not correspond with the list of the Tropes which Sextus gives, proving that Diogenes took some other text than that of Sextus as his authority.121 The difference in the order of the Tropes shows, also, that the order was not considered a matter of great importance. There is a marked contrast in the spirit of the two presentations of the Tropes given by Sextus and Diogenes. The former gives them not only as an orator, but as one who feels that he is defending his own cause, and the school of which he is the leader, against mortal enemies, while Diogenes relates them as an historian. Pappenheim tries to prove122 that Aenesidemus originally gave only nine Tropes in his Pyrrhonean Hypotyposes, as Aristocles mentions only nine in referring to the Tropes of Aenesidemus, and that the tenth was added later. Had this been the case, however, the fact would surely have been mentioned either by Diogenes or Sextus, who both refer to the ten Tropes of Aenesidemus. The Tropes claim to prove that the character of phenomena is so relative and changeable, that certain knowledge cannot be based upon them, and as we have shown, there is no other criterion of knowledge for the Sceptic than phenomena.123 All of the Tropes, except the tenth, are connected with sense-perception, and relate to the difference of the results obtained through the senses under different circumstances. They may be divided into two classes, i.e., those based upon differences of our physical organism, and those based upon external differences. To the first class belong the first, second, third and fourth; to the second class, the fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth, and also the ninth. The eighth, or that of relation, is applied objectively both by Sextus and Diogenes in their treatment of the Tropes, and is not used for objects of thought alone, but principally to show the relation of outward objects to each other. The tenth is

121 Diog. IX. 11, 87. 122 Pappenheim, Die Tropen der Griechen, p. 23. 123 Hyp. I. 22.

39 the only one which has a moral significance, and it has also a higher subjective value than the others; it takes its arguments from an entirely different sphere of thought, and deals with metaphysical and religious contradictions in opinion, and with the question of good and evil. That this Trope is one of the oldest, we know from its distinct mention in connection with the foundation theories of Pyrrho, by Diogenes.124 In treating of the subjective reasons for doubt as to the character of external reality, the Sceptics were very near the denial of all outward reality, a point, however, which they never quite reached. There is evidently much of Sextus' own thought mixed with the illustrations of the Tropes, but it is impossible to separate the original parts from the material that was the common property of the Sceptical School. Many of these illustrations show, however, perfect familiarity with the scientific and medical teachings of the time. Before entering upon his exposition of the Tropes, Sextus gives them in the short concise form in which they must first have existed.125

(i) Based upon the variety of animals. (ii) Based upon the differences between men. (iii) Based upon differences in the constitution of the sense organs. (iv) Based upon circumstances. (v) Based upon position, distance and place. (vi) Based upon mixtures. (vii) Based upon the quantities and constitutions of objects. (viii) Relation. (ix) Based upon frequency or rarity of occurences. (x) Based upon systems, customs and laws, mythical beliefs, and dogmatic opinions.

124 Diog. IX. 11, 61. 125 Hyp. I. 36-38.


Although Sextus is careful not to dogmatise regarding the arrangement of the Tropes, yet there is in his classification of them a regular gradation, from the arguments based upon differences in animals to those in man, first considering the latter in relation to the physical constitution, and then to circumstances outside of us, and finally the treatment of metaphysical and moral differences. The First Trope.126 That the same mental representations are not found in different animals, may be inferred from their differences in constitution resulting from their different origins, and from the variety in their organs of sense. Sextus takes up the five senses in order, giving illustrations to prove the relative results of the mental representations in all of them, as for example the subjectivity of color127 and sound.128 All knowledge of objects through the senses is relative and not absolute. Sextus does not, accordingly, confine the impossibility of certain knowledge to the qualities that Locke regards as secondary, but includes also the primary ones in this statement.129 The form and shape of objects as they appear to us may be changed by pressure on the eyeball. Furthermore, the character of reflections in mirrors depend entirely on their shape, as the images in concave mirrors are very different from those in convex ones; and so in the same way as the eyes of animals are of different shapes, and supplied with different fluids, the ideas of dogs, fishes, men and grasshoppers must be very different.130 In discussing the mental representations of animals of different grades of intelligence, Sextus shows a very good comprehension of the philogenetic development of the organs of sense, and draws the final conclusion that external objects are regarded differently by animals, according to their difference in

126 Hyp. I. 40-61. 127 Hyp. I. 44-46. 128 Hyp. I. 50. 129 Hyp. I. 47. 130 Hyp. I. 49.

41 constitution.131 These differences in the ideas which different animals have of the same objects are demonstrated by their different tastes, as the things desired by some are fatal to others.132 The practical illustrations given of this result show a familiarity with , and cognizance of the tastes and habits of many animals,133 but were probably few of them original with Sextus, unless perhaps in their application; that this train of reasoning was the common property of the Sceptic School, we know from the fact that Diogenes begins his exposition of the first Trope in a way similar to that of Sextus.134 His illustrations are, however, few and meagre compared with those of Sextus, and the scientific facts used by both of them may mostly be found in other authors of antiquity given in a similar way.135 The logical result of the reasoning used to explain the first Trope, is that we cannot compare the ideas of the animals with each other, nor with our own; nor can we prove that our ideas are more trustworthy than those of the animals.136 As therefore an examination of ideas is impossible, any decided opinion about their trustworthiness is also impossible, and this Trope leads to the regarding external objects, or to ™poc»137 After reaching this conclusion, Sextus introduces a long chapter to prove that animals can reason. There is no reference to this in Diogenes, but there is other testimony to show that it was a favourite line of argument with the Sceptics.138 Sextus, however, says that his course of reasoning is different from that of most of the Sceptics on the subject,139 as they usually applied their arguments to

131 Hyp. I. 54. 132 Hyp. I. 55. 133 Hyp. I. 55-59. 134 Diog. IX. 11, 79-80. 135 Pappenheim Erlauterung Pyrr. Grundzüge Par. 41. 136 Hyp. I. 59. 137 Hyp. I. 61. 138 Hyp. I. 238. 139 Compare Brochard Op. cit. 256.

42 all animals, while he selected only one, namely the dog.140 This chapter is full of sarcastic attacks on the Dogmatics, and contains the special allusion to the Stoics as the greatest opponents of the Sceptics, which has been before referred to.141 Sextus claims with a greater freedom of diction than in some apparently less original chapters, and with a wealth of special illustrations, that the dog is superior to man in acuteness of perception,142 that he has the power of choice, and possesses an art, that of hunting,143 and, also, is not deprived of ,144 as the true nature of virtue is to show justice to all, which the dog does by guarding loyally those who are kind to him, and keeping off those who do evil.145 The reasoning power of this animal is proved by the story taken from , of the dog that came to a meeting of three roads in following a scent. After seeking the scent in vain in two of the roads, he takes the third road without scenting it as a result of a quick process of thought, which proves that he shares in the famous dialectic of Chrysippus,146 the five forms of ¢napÒdeiktoi lÒgoi, of which the dog chooses the fifth. Either A or B or C, not A or B, therefore C. The dog and other irrational animals may also possess spoken language, as the only proof that we have to the contrary, is the fact that we cannot understand the sounds that they make.147 We have an example in this chapter of the humor of Sextus, who after enlarging on the perfect character of the dog, remarks, “For which reason it seems to me some philosophers have honoured themselves

140 Hyp. I. 62-63. 141 Hyp. I. 65. 142 Hyp. I. 64. 143 Hyp. I. 66. 144 Hyp. I. 67. 145 Hyp. I. 67. 146 Hyp. I. 69; Hyp. II. 166; Diog. VII. 1, 79. 147 Hyp. I. 74.

43 with the name of this animal,”148 thus making a sarcastic allusion to the Cynics, especially .149 The Second Trope. Passing on to the second Trope, Sextus aims to prove that even if we leave the differences of the mental images of animals out of the discussion, there is not a sufficient unanimity in the mental images of human beings to allow us to base any assertions upon them in regard to the character of external objects.150 He had previously announced that he intended to oppose the phenomenal to the intellectual “in any way whatever,”151 so he begins here by referring to the two parts of which man is said to be composed, the soul and the body, and proceeds to discuss the differences among men in sense-perception and in opinion.152 Most of the illustrations given of differences in sense-perception are medical ones; of the more general of these I will note the only two which are also given by Diogenes in his exposition of this Trope,153 viz., Demophon, Alexander's table waiter, who shivered in the sun, and Andron the Argive, who was so free from thirst that he travelled through the desert of Libya without seeking a drink. Some have reasoned from the presence of the first of these illustrations in the exposition of the Tropes, that a part of this material at least goes back to the time of Pyrrho, as Pyrrho from his intimacy with Alexander, when he accompanied him to India, had abundant opportunities to observe the peculiarities of his servant Demophon.154 The illustration of Andron the Argive is taken from Aristotle, according to Diogenes.155

148 Hyp. I. 72. 149 Diog. VI. 1, 13. 150 Hyp. I. 79. 151 Hyp. I. 8. 152 Hyp. I. 80. 153 Diog. IX. 11, 80-81. 154 Compare Pyrrhon et le Scepticism primitive, Revue phil., Paris 1885, No. 5; Victor Brochard, p. 521. 155 Diog. IX. 11, 81.


Passing on to differences of opinion, we have another example of the sarcastic humor of Sextus, as he refers to the fusiognwmonik» sof…a156 as the authority for believing that the body is a type of the soul. As the bodies of men differ, so the souls also probably differ. The differences of mind among men is not referred to by Diogenes, except in the general statement that they choose different professions; while Sextus elaborates this point, speaking of the great differences in opposing schools of philosophy, and in the objects of choice and avoidance, and sources of for different men.157 The poets well understand this marked difference in human desires, as says,

“One man enjoys this, another enjoys that.”

Sextus also quotes the beautiful lines of ,158

“One delights in getting honours and crowns through stormfooted horses, Others in passing life in rooms rich in gold, Another safe travelling enjoys, in a swift ship, on a wave of the sea.”

The Third Trope. The third Trope limits the argument to the sense-perceptions of one man, a Dogmatic, if preferred, or to one whom the Dogmatics consider wise,159 and states that as the ideas given by the different sense organs differ radically in a way that does not admit of their being compared with each other, they furnish no reliable testimony regarding the nature of objects.160 “Each of the phenomena perceived by us seems to present itself in many forms, as the apple, smooth, fragrant brown and sweet.” The apple was evidently the ordinary example given for this Trope, for Diogenes

156 Hyp. I. 85. 157 Hyp. I. 87-89. 158 Hyp. I. 86. 159 Hyp. I. 90. 160 Hyp. I. 94.

45 uses the same, but in a much more condensed form, and not with equal understanding of the results to be deduced from it.161 The consequence of the incompatibility of the mental representations produced through the several sense organs by the apple, may be the acceptance of either of the three following propositions: (i) That only those qualities exist in the apple which we perceive. (ii) That more than these exist. (iii) That even those perceived do not exist.162 Accordingly, any experience which can give rise to such different views regarding outward objects, cannot be relied upon as a testimony concerning them. The non-homogeneous nature of the mental images connected with the different sense organs, as presented by Sextus, reminds us of the discussion of the same subject by Berkeley in his Theory of Vision. Sextus says that a man born with less than the usual number of senses, would form altogether different ideas of the external world than those who have the usual number, and as our ideas of objects depend on our mental images, a greater number of sense organs would give us still different ideas of outward reality.163 The strong argument of the Stoics against such reasoning as this, was their doctrine of pre-established harmony between nature and the soul, so that when a representation is produced in us of a real object, a katalhptik¾ fantas…a,164 by this representation the soul grasps a real existence. There is a lÒgoj in us which is of the same kind, sÚggenoj, or in relation to all nature. This argument of pre- established harmony between the faculties of the soul and the objects of nature, is the one that has been used in all ages to combat philosophical teaching that denies that we apprehend the external world as it is. It was used against Kant by his opponents, who

161 Diog. IX. 11 81. 162 Hyp. I. 99. 163 Hyp. I. 96-97. 164 Adv. Math. VII. 93.

46 thought in this way to refute his teachings.165 The Sceptics could not, of course, accept a theory of nature that included the soul and the external world in one harmonious whole, but Sextus in his discussion of the third Trope does not refute this argument as fully as he does later in his work against logic.166 He simply states here that philosophers themselves cannot agree as to what nature is, and furthermore, that a himself is a part of the discord, and to be judged, rather than being capable of judging, and that no conclusion can be reached by those who are themselves an element of the uncertainty.167 The Fourth Trope. This Trope limits the argument to each separate sense, and the effect is considered of the condition of body and mind upon sense-perception in relation to the several sense- organs.168 The physical states which modify sense-perception are health and illness, sleeping and waking, youth and age, hunger and satiety, drunkenness and sobriety. All of these conditions of the body entirely change the character of the mental images, producing different judgments of the color, taste, and temperature of objects, and of the character of sounds. A man who is asleep is in a different world from one awake, the existence of both worlds being relative to the condition of waking and sleeping.169 The subjective states which Sextus mentions here as modifying the character of the mental representations are hating or loving, courage or fear, sorrow or joy, and sanity or insanity.170 No man is ever twice in exactly the same condition of body or mind, and never able to review the differences of his ideas as a sum total, for those of the present moment only are subject to careful inspection.171 Furthermore, no one is free from the influence of all

165 Ueberweg Op. cit. 195. 166 Adv. Math. VII. 354. 167 Hyp. I. 98-99. 168 Hyp. I. 100. 169 Hyp. I. 104. 170 Hyp. I. 100. 171 Hyp. I. 112.

47 conditions of body or mind, so that he can be unbiassed to judge his ideas, and no criterion can be established that can be shown to be true, but on the contrary, whatever course is pursued on the subject, both the criterion and the proof will be thrown into the circulus in probando, for the truth of each rests on the other.172 Diogenes gives in part the same illustrations of this Trope, but in a much more condensed form. The marked characteristic of this train of reasoning is the attempt to prove that abnormal conditions are also natural. In referring at first to the opposing states of body and mind, which so change the character of sense- perception, Sextus classifies them according to the popular usage as kat¦ fÚsin and par¦ fÚsin. This distinction was an important one, even with Aristotle, and was especially developed by the Stoics173 in a broader sense than referring merely to health and sickness. The Stoics, however, considered only normal conditions as being according to nature. Sextus, on the contrary, declares that abnormal states are also conditions according to nature,174 and just as those who are in health are in a state that is natural to those who are in health, so also those not in health are in a state that is natural to those not in health, and in some respects according to nature. Existence, then, and non-existence are not absolute, but relative, and the world of sleep as really exists for those who are asleep as the things that exist in waking exist, although they do not exist in sleep.175 One mental representation, therefore, cannot be judged by another, which is also in a state of relation to existing physical and mental conditions. Diogenes states this principle even more decidedly in his exposition of this Trope. “The insane are not in a condition opposed to nature; why they more than we? For we also see the sun as if it were stationary.”176 Furthermore, in different

172 Hyp. I. 117. 173 Diog. VII. 1, 86. 174 Hyp. I. 103. 175 Hyp. I. 104. 176 Diog. IX. 11, 82.

48 periods of life ideas differ. Children are fond of balls and hoops, while those in their prime prefer other things, and the aged still others.177 The wisdom contained in this Trope in reference to the relative value of the things most sought after is not original with Sextus, but is found in the more earnest ethical teachings of older writers. Sextus does not, however, draw any moral conclusions from this reasoning, but only uses it as an argument for ™poc». The Fifth Trope. This Trope leaves the discussion of the dependence of the ideas upon the physical nature, and takes up the influence of the environment upon them. It makes the difference in ideas depend upon the position, distance, and place of objects, thus taking apparently their real existence for granted. Things change their form and shape according to the distance from which they are observed, and the position in which they stand.178 The same light or tone alters decidedly in different surroundings. Perspective in paintings depends on the angle at which the picture is suspended.179 With Diogenes this Trope is the seventh,180 and his exposition of it is similar, but as usual, shorter. Both Sextus and Diogenes give the illustration181 of the neck of the dove differing in color in different degrees of inclination, an illustration used by also to prove the relativity of perception by the senses. “The black neck of the dove in the shade appears black, but in the light sunny and purple.”182 Since, then, all phenomena are regarded in a certain place, and from a certain distance, and according to a certain position, each of which relations makes a great difference with the mental images, we shall be obliged also by this Trope to come to the reserving of the opinion.183

177 Hyp. I. 106. 178 Hyp. I. 118. 179 Hyp. I. 120. 180 Diog. IX. 11, 85. 181 Hyp. I. 120; Diog. IX. 11, 86. 182 Schol. zu Arist. 60, 18, ed. Brandis; Pappen. Er. Pyrr. Grundzüge, p. 54. 183 Hyp. I. 121.


The Sixth Trope. This Trope leads to ™poc» regarding the nature of objects, because no object can ever be presented to the organs of sense directly, but must always be perceived through some medium, or in some mixture.184 This mixture may be an outward one, connected with the temperature, or the rarity of the air, or the water185 surrounding an object, or it may be a mixture resulting from the different humors of the sense-organs.186 A man with the jaundice, for example, sees colors differently from one who is in health. The illustration of the jaundice is a favorite one with the Sceptics. Diogenes uses it several times in his presentation of Scepticism, and it occurs in Sextus' writings in all, as an illustration, in eight different places.187 The condition of the organ of the ¹gemonikÒn, or the ruling faculty, may also cause mixtures. Pappenheim thinks that we have here Kant's idea of a priori, only on a materialistic foundation.188 A careful consideration of the passage, however, shows us that Sextus' thought is more in harmony with the discoveries of modern psychiatry than with the philosophy of Kant. If the sentence, ‡swj d kaˆ aÜth (¹ di£noia) ™pimix…an tin¦ „d…an poie‹tai prÕj t¦ ØpÕ tîn a„sq»sewn ¢naggellÒmena,189 stood alone, without further explanation, it might well refer to a priori laws of thought, but the explanation which follows beginning with “because” makes that impossible.190 “Because in each of the places where the Dogmatics think that the ruling faculty is, we see present certain humors, which are the cause of mixtures.” Sextus does not advance any opinion as to the place of the ruling faculty in the body, which is, according to the Stoics, the principal part of the soul, where ideas, desires, and reasoning originate,191 but simply

184 Hyp. I. 124. 185 Hyp. I. 125. 186 Hyp. I. 126. 187 See Index to Bekker's edition of Sextus. 188 Papp. Er. Pyr. Gr. p. 55. 189 Hyp. I. 128. 190 Hyp. I. 128. 191 Diog. VII. 1, 159.

50 refers to the two theories of the Dogmatics, which claim on the one hand that it is in the brain, and on the other that it is in the heart.192 This subject he deals with more fully in his work against logic.193 As, however, he bases his argument, in discussing possible intellectual mixtures in illustration of the sixth Trope, entirely on the condition of the organ of the intellect, it is evident that his theory of the soul was a materialistic one. The Seventh Trope. This Trope, based upon the quantities and compositions of objects, is illustrated by examples of different kinds of food, drink, and medicine, showing the different effects according to the quantity taken, as the harmfulness and the usefulness of most things depend on their quantity. Things act differently upon the senses if applied in small or large quantities, as filings of metal or horn, and separate grains of sand have a different color and touch from the same taken in the form of a solid.194 The result is that ideas vary according to the composition of the object, and this Trope also brings to confusion the existence of outward objects, and leads us to reserve our opinion in regard to them.195 This Trope is illustrated by Diogenes with exceeding brevity.196 The Eighth Trope. The Trope based upon relation contains, as Sextus rightly remarks, the substance of the other nine,197 for the general statement of the relativity of knowledge includes the other statements made. The prominence which Sextus gave this Trope in his introduction to the ten Tropes leads one to expect here new illustrations and added198 arguments for ™poc». We find, however, neither of these, but simply a statement that all things are in relation in one of two ways, either directly, or as being a part of a difference. These two kinds of relation are given by Protagoras, and might have

192 Hyp. I. 128. 193 Adv. Math. VII. 313. 194 Hyp. I. 129-131. 195 Hyp. I. 134. 196 Diog. IX. 11, 86. 197 Hyp. I. 39. 198 Hyp. I. 135-140.

51 been used to good purpose in the introduction to the Tropes, or at the end, to prove that all the others were really subordinate to the eighth. The reasoning is, however simply applied to the relation of objects to each other, and nothing is added that is not found elsewhere where as an argument for ™poc».199 This Trope is the tenth by Diogenes, and he strengthens his reasoning in regard to it, by a statement that Sextus does not directly make, i.e., that everything is in relation to the understanding.200 The Ninth Trope. This is based upon the frequency and rarity of events, and refers to some of the phenomena of nature, such as the rising of the sun, and the sea, as no longer a source of astonishment, while a comet or an earthquake are wonders to those not accustomed to them.201 The value of objects also depends on their rarity, as for example the value of gold.202 Furthermore, things may be valuable at one time, and at another not so, according to the frequency and rarity of the occurrence.203 Therefore this Trope also leads to ™poc» . Diogenes gives only two illustrations to this Trope, that of the sun and the earthquake.204 The Tenth Trope. We have already remarked on the difference in the character of the tenth Trope, dealing as it does, not with the ideas of objects, like the other nine Tropes, but with philosophical and religious opinions, and questions of right and wrong. It was the well-known aim of the Sceptics to submit to the laws and customs of the land where they were found, and to conform to certain moral teachings and religious ceremonies; this they did without either affirming or denying the truth of the principles upon which these teachings were based,205 and also

199 Hyp. I. 135-140. 200 Diog. IX. 11, 88. 201 Hyp. I. 141-142. 202 Hyp. I. 143. 203 Hyp. I. 144. 204 Diog. IX. 11, 87. 205 Hyp. I. 24.

52 without any passion or strong feeling in regard to them,206 as nothing in itself can be proved to be good or evil. The tenth Trope accordingly, brings forward contradictions in customs, laws, and the beliefs of different lands, to show that they are also changeable and relative, and not of absolute worth. The foundation-thought of this Trope is given twice by Diogenes, once as we have before stated in his introduction207 to the life of Pyrrho, and also as one of the Tropes.208 As it is apparently one of the oldest of the Tropes, it would naturally be much used in discussing with the Stoics, whose philosophy had such a wide ethical significance, and must also have held an important place in the Sceptical School in all metaphysical and philosophical discussions. The definition209 in the beginning of Sextus' exposition of this Trope Fabricius thinks was taken from Aristotle, of schools, laws, customs, mythical beliefs and dogmatic opinions,210 and the definition which Diogenes gives of law in his life of Plato211 is similar. Pappenheim, however, thinks they were taken from the Stoics, perhaps from Chrysippus.212 The argument is based upon the differences in development of thought, as affecting the standpoint of judgment in philosophy, in morals, and religion, the results of which we find in the widely opposing schools of philosophy, in the variety in religious belief, and in the laws and customs of different countries. Therefore the decisions reached in the world of thought leave us equally in doubt regarding the absolute value of any standards, with those obtained through sense- perception, and the universal conflict of opinion regarding all questions of philosophy and leads us also according to this

206 Hyp. III. 235. 207 Diog. IX. 11, 61. 208 Diog. IX. 11, 83. 209 Hyp. I. 145-147. 210 Fabricius, Cap. IV. H. 211 Diog. III. 86. 212 Pappenheim Gr. Pyrr. Grundzüge, p. 50.


Trope to the reserving of the opinion.213 This Trope is the fifth as given by Diogenes, who placed it directly after the first four which relate more especially to human development,214 while Sextus uses it as the final one, perhaps thinking that an argument based upon the higher powers of man deserves the last place, or is the summation of the other arguments. Following the exposition of the ten Tropes of the older Sceptics, Sextus gives the five Tropes which he attributes to the “later Sceptics.”215 Sextus nowhere mentions the author of these Tropes. Diogenes, however, attributes them to Agrippa, a man of whom we know nothing except his mention of him. He was evidently one of the followers of Aenesidemus, and a scholar of influence in the Sceptical School, who must have himself had disciples, as Diogenes says, oƒ perˆ 'Agr…ppan216 add to these tropes other five tropes, using the plural verb. Another Sceptic, also mentioned by Diogenes, and a man unknown from other sources, named some of his books after Agrippa.217 Agrippa is not given by Diogenes in the list of the leaders of the Sceptical School, but218 his influence in the development of the thought of the School must have been great, as the transition from the ten Tropes of the “older Sceptics” to the five attributed to Agrippa is a marked one, and shows the entrance into the school of a logical power before unknown in it. The latter are not a reduction of the Tropes of Aenesidemus, but are written from an entirely different standpoint. The ten Tropes are empirical, and aim to furnish objective proofs of the foundation theories of Pyrrhonism, while the five are rather rules of thought leading to logical proof, and are dialectic in their character. We find this distinction illustrated by the different way in

213 Hyp. I. 163. 214 Diog. IX. 11, 83. 215 Hyp. I. 164. 216 Diog. IX. 11, 88. 217 Diog. IX. 11, 106. 218 Diog. IX. 12, 115-116.

54 which the Trope of relativity is treated in the two groups. In the first it points to an objective relativity, but with Agrippa to a general subjective logical principle. The originality of the Tropes of Agrippa does not lie in their substance matter, but in their formulation and use in the Sceptical School. These methods of proof were, of course, not new, but were well known to Aristotle, and were used by the Sceptical Academy, and probably also by Timon,219 while the prÒj ti goes back at least to Protagoras. The five Tropes are as follows.

(i) The one based upon discord. (ii) The regressus in infinitum. (iii) Relation. (iv) The hypothetical. (v) The circulus in probando.

Two of these are taken from the old list, the first and the third, and Sextus says that the five Tropes are intended to supplement the ten Tropes, and to show the audacity of the Dogmatics in a variety of ways.220 The order of these Tropes is the same with Diogenes as with Sextus, but the definitions of them differ sufficiently to show that the two authors took their material from different sources. According to the first one everything in question is either sensible or intellectual, and in attempting to judge it either in life, practically, or “among philosophers,” a position is developed from which it is impossible to reach a conclusion.221 According to the second, every proof requires another proof, and so on to infinity, and there is no standpoint from which to begin the reasoning.222 According to the third, all perceptions are relative, as the object is colored by the condition of the judge, and the influence

219 Compare Natorp. Op. cit. p. 302. 220 Hyp. I. 177. 221 Hyp. I. 165. 222 Hyp. I. 166.

55 of other things around it.223 According to the fourth, it is impossible to escape from the regressus in infinitum by making a hypothesis the starting point, as the Dogmatics attempt to do.224 And the fifth, or the circulus in probando, arises when that which should be the proof needs to be sustained by the thing to be proved. Sextus claims that all things can be included in these Tropes, whether sensible or intellectual.225 For whether, as some say, only the things of sense are true, or as others claim, only those of the understanding, or as still others contend, some things both of sense and understanding are true, a discord must arise that is impossible to be judged, for it cannot be judged by the sensible, nor by the intellectual, for the things of the intellect themselves require a proof; accordingly, the result of all reasoning must be either hypothetical, or fall into the regressus in infinitum or the circulus in probando.226 The reference above to some who say that only the things of sense are true, is to Epicurus and Protagoras; to some that only the things of thought are true, to and ; and to those that claimed some of both to be true, to the Stoics and the Peripatetics.227 The three new Tropes added by Agrippa have nothing to do with sense-perception, but bear entirely upon the possibility of reasoning, as demanded by the science of logic, in contrast to the earlier ones which related almost entirely, with the exception of the tenth, to material objects. Sextus claims that these five Tropes also lead to the suspension of judgment,228 but their logical result is rather the dogmatic denial of all possibility of knowledge, showing as Hirzel has well demonstrated, far more the influence of the New Academy than the spirit of the Sceptical School.229 It was the standpoint of the older Sceptics, that although the search for the truth had not yet

223 Hyp. I. 167. 224 Hyp. I. 168. 225 Hyp. I. 169. 226 Hyp. I. 170-171. 227 Adv. Math. VIII. 185-186; VIII. 56; VII. 369. 228 Hyp. I. 177. 229 Hirzel Op. cit. p. 131.

56 succeeded, yet they were still seekers, and Sextus claims to be faithful to this old aim of the Pyrrhonists. He calls himself a seeker,230 and in reproaching the New Academy for affirming that knowledge is impossible, Sextus says, “Moreover, we say that our ideas are equal as regards trustworthiness and untrustworthiness.”231 The ten Tropes claim to establish doubt only in regard to a knowledge of the truth, but the five Tropes of Agrippa aim to logically prove the impossibility of knowledge. It is very strange that Sextus does not see this decided contrast in the attitude of the two sets of Tropes, and expresses his approval of those of Agrippa, and makes more frequent use of the fifth of these, Ð di£llhloj, in his subsequent reasoning than of any other argument.232 We find here in the Sceptical School, shortly after the time of Aenesidemus, the same tendency to dogmatic teaching that – so far as the dim and shadowy history of the last years of the New Academy can be unravelled, and the separation of Pyrrhonism can be understood, at the time that the Academy passed over into eclecticism – was one of the causes of that separation. It is true that the Tropes of Agrippa show great progress in the development of thought. They furnish an organisation of the School far superior to what went before, placing the reasoning on the firm basis of the laws of logic, and simplifying the amount of material to be used. In a certain sense Saisset is correct in saying that Agrippa contributed more than any other in completing the organisation of Scepticism,233 but it is not correct when we consider the true spirit of Scepticism with which the Tropes of Agrippa were not in harmony. It was through the very progress shown in the production of these Tropes that the school finally lost the strength of its position.

230 Hyp. I. 3, 7. 231 Hyp. I. 227. 232 See Index of Bekker's edition of Sextus' works. 233 Saisset Op. cit. p. 237.


Not content with having reduced the number of the Tropes from ten to five, others tried to limit the number still further to two.234 Sextus gives us no hint of the authorship of the two Tropes. Ritter attributes them to Menodotus and his followers, and Zeller agrees with that opinion,235 while Saisset thinks that Agrippa was also the author of these,236 which is a strange theory to propound, as some of the material of the five is repeated in the two, and the same man could certainly not appear as an advocate of five, and at the same time of two Tropes. The two Tropes are founded on the principle that anything must be known through itself or through something else. It cannot be known through itself, because of the discord existing between all things of the senses and intellect, nor can it be known through something else, as then either the regressus in infinitum or the circulus in probando follow.237 Diogenes Laertius does not refer to these two Tropes. In regard to all these Tropes of the suspension of judgment, Sextus has well remarked in his introduction to them, that they are included in the eighth, or that of relation.238 The Tropes of Aetiology. The eight Tropes against belong chronologically before the five Tropes of Agrippa, in the history of the development of sceptical thought. They have a much closer connection with the spirit of Scepticism than the Tropes of Agrippa, including, as they do, the fundamental thought of Pyrrhonism, i.e., that the phenomena do not reveal the unknown. The Sceptics did not deny the phenomena, but they denied that the phenomena are capable of being interpreted, or of revealing the reality of causes. It is impossible by a research of the signs to find out the unknown, or the explanation of things, as the

234 Hyp. I. 178. 235 Zeller III. 38; Ritter IV. 277. 236 Saisset Op. cit. p. 231. 237 Hyp. I. 178-179. 238 Hyp. I. 39.


Stoics and Epicureans claim. The theory of Aenesidemus which lies at the foundation of his eight Tropes against aetiology, is given to us by Photius as follows:239 “There are no visible signs of the unknown, and those who believe in its existence are the victims of a vain illusion.” This statement of Aenesidemus is confirmed by a fuller explanation of it given later on by Sextus.240 If phenomena are not signs of the unknown there is no causality, and a refutation of causality is a proof of the impossibility of science, as all science is the science of causes, the power of studying causes from effects, or as Sextus calls them, phenomena. It is very noticeable to any one who reads the refutation of causality by Aenesidemus, as given by Sextus,241 that there is no reference to the strongest argument of modern Scepticism, since the time of Hume, against causality, namely that the origin of the idea of causality cannot be so accounted for as to justify our relying upon it as a form of cognition.242 The eight Tropes are directed against the possibility of knowledge of nature, which Aenesidemus contested against in all his Tropes, the ten as well as the eight.243 They are written from a materialistic standpoint. These Tropes are given with illustrations by Fabricius as follows: I. Since aetiology in general refers to things that are unseen, it does not give testimony that is incontestable in regard to phenomena. For example, the Pythagoreans explain the distance of the planets by a musical proportion. II. From many equally plausible reasons which might be given for the same thing, one only is arbitrarily chosen, as some explain the inundation of the Nile by a fall of snow at its source,

239 Myriob. 170 B. 12. 240 Adv. Math. VIII. 207. 241 Hyp. I. 180-186. 242 Ueberweg Op. cit. p. 217. 243 Hyp. I. 98.

59 while there could be other causes, as rain, or wind, or the action of the sun. III. Things take place in an orderly manner, but the causes presented do not show any order, as for example, the motion of the stars is explained by their mutual pressure, which does not take into account the order that reigns among them. IV. The unseen things are supposed to take place in the same way as phenomena, as vision is explained in the same way as the appearance of images in a dark room. V. Most philosophers present theories of aetiology which agree with their own individual hypotheses about the elements, but not with common and accepted ideas, as to explain the world by atoms like Epicurus, by homoeomeriae like , or by matter and form like Aristotle. VI. Theories are accepted which agree with individual hypotheses, and others equally probable are passed by, as Aristotle's explanation of comets, that they are a collection of vapors near the earth, because that coincided with his theory of the universe. VII. Theories of aetiology are presented which conflict not only with individual hypotheses, but also with phenomena, as to admit like Epicurus an inclination or desire of the soul, which was incompatible with the necessity which he advocated. VIII. The inscrutable is explained by things equally inscrutable, as the rising of sap in plants is explained by the attraction of a sponge for water, a fact contested by some.244 Diogenes does not mention these Tropes in this form, but he gives a resumé of the general arguments of the Sceptics against aetiology,245 which has less in common with the eight Tropes of Aenesidemus, than with the presentation of the subject by Sextus later,246 when he multiplies his proofs exceedingly to show mhdn

244 Hyp. I. 180-186; Fabricius, Cap. XVII. 180 z. 245 Diog. IX. 11, 96-98. 246 Hyp. III. 24-28.

60 enai a‡tion. Although the Tropes of Aenesidemus have a dialectic rather than an objective character, it would not seem that he made the distinction, which is so prominent with Sextus, between the signs Øpomnhstik£ and ™ndeiktik£,247 especially as Diogenes sums up his argument on the subject with the general assertion, Shme‹on oÙk enai,248 and proceeds to introduce the logical consequence of the denial of aetiology. The summing up of the Tropes of Aenesidemus is given as follows, in the Hypotyposes, by Sextus: – “A cause in harmony with all the sects of philosophy, and with Scepticism, and with phenomena, is perhaps not possible, for the phenomena and the unknown altogether disagree.”249 It is interesting to remark in connection with the seventh of these Tropes, that Aenesidemus asserts that causality has only a subjective value, which from his materialistic standpoint was an argument against its real existence, and the same argument is used by Kant to prove that causality is a necessary condition of thought.250 Chaignet characterises the Tropes of Aenesidemus as false and sophistical,251 but as Maccoll has well said, they are remarkable for their judicious and strong criticism, and are directed against the false method of observing facts through the light of preconceived opinion.252 They have, however, a stronger critical side than sceptical, and show the positive tendency of the thought of Aenesidemus.

247 Adv. Math. VIII. 151. 248 Diog. IX. 11, 96. 249 Hyp. I. 185. 250 Compare Maccoll Op. cit. p. 77. 251 Chaignet Op. cit. 507. 252 Maccoll Op. cit. p. 88.


Chapter 4

Aenesidemus and the Philosophy of Heraclitus

A paragraph in the First Book of the Hypotyposes which has given rise to much speculation and many different theories, is the comparison which Sextus makes of Scepticism with the philosophy of Heraclitus.253 In this paragraph the statement is made that Aenesidemus and his followers, oƒ perˆ tÕn A„nhs…dhmon, said that Scepticism is the path to the philosophy of Heraclitus, because the doctrine that contradictory predicates appear to be applicable to the same thing, leads the way to the one that contradictory predicates are in reality applicable to the same thing.254 oƒ perˆ tÕn A„nhs…dhmon Ÿlegon ÐdÕn enai t¾n skeptik¾n ¢gwg¾n ™pˆ t¾n `Hrakle…teion filosof…an, diÒti prohge‹tai toà t¢nant…a perˆ tÕ aÙtÕ Øp£rcein tÕ t¢nant…a perˆ tÕ aÙtÕ fa…nesqhai. As the Sceptics say that contradictory predicates appear to be applicable to the same thing, the Heraclitans come from this to the more positive doctrine that they are in reality so.255 This connection which Aenesidemus is said to have affirmed between Scepticism and the philosophy of Heraclitus is earnestly combated by Sextus, who declares that the fact that contradictory predicates appear to be applicable to the same thing is not a dogma of the Sceptics, but a fact which presents itself to all men, and not to the Sceptics only. No one for instance, whether he be a Sceptic or not, would dare to say that honey does not taste sweet to those in health, and bitter to those who have the jaundice, so that Heraclitus begins from a preconception common to all men, as to us also, and perhaps to the other schools of philosophy as

253 Hyp. I. 210. 254 Hyp. I. 210. 255 Hyp. I. 210.

62 well.256 As the statement concerning the appearance of contradictory predicates in regard to the same thing is not an exclusively sceptical one, then Scepticism is no more a path to the philosophy of Heraclitus than to other schools of philosophy, or to life, as all use common subject matter. “But we are afraid that the Sceptical School not only does not help towards the knowledge of the philosophy of Heraclitus, but even hinders that result. Since the Sceptic accuses Heraclitus of having rashly dogmatised, presenting on the one hand the doctrine of 'conflagration' and on the other that 'contradictory predicates are in reality applicable to the same thing.'“257 “It is absurd, then, to say that this conflicting school is a path to the sect with which it conflicts. It is therefore absurd to say that the Sceptical School is a path to the philosophy of Heraclitus.”258 This is not the only place in the writings of Sextus which states that Aenesidemus at some time of his life was an advocate of the doctrines of Heraclitus. In no instance, however, where Sextus refers to this remarkable fact, does he offer any explanation of it, or express any bitterness against Aenesidemus, whom he always speaks of with respect as a leader of the Sceptical School. We are thus furnished with one of the most difficult problems of ancient Scepticism, the problem of reconciling the apparent advocacy of Aenesidemus of the teachings of Heraclitus with his position in the Sceptical School. A comparison with each other of the references made by Sextus and other writers to the teachings of Aenesidemus, and a consideration of the result, gives us two pictures of Aenesidemus which conflict most decidedly with each other. We have on the one hand, the man who was the first to give Pyrrhonism a position as an influential school, and the first to collect and present to the world the results of preceding Sceptical thought. He was the compiler of the

256 Hyp. I. 211. 257 Hyp. I. 212. 258 Hyp. I. 212.

63 ten Tropes of ™poc», and perhaps in part their author, and the author of the eight Tropes against aetiology.259 He develops his Scepticism from the standpoint that neither the senses nor the intellect can give us any certain knowledge of reality.260 He denied the possibility of studying phenomena as signs of the unknown.261 He denied all possibility of truth, and the reality of motion, origin and decay. There was according to his teaching no pleasure or happiness, and no wisdom or supreme good. He denied the possibility of finding out the nature of things, or of proving the existence of the gods, and finally he declared that no ethical aim is possible. The picture on the other hand, presented to us by Sextus and , is that of a man with a system of beliefs and dogmas, which lead, he says, to the philosophy of Heraclitus. In strange contradiction to his assertion of the impossibility of all knowledge, he advocates a theory that the original substance is air,262 which is most certainly a dogma, although indeed a deviation from the teachings of Heraclitus, of which Sextus seemed unconscious, as he says, tÕ te Ôn kat¦ tÕn Hr£kleiton ¢»r ™stin, æj fhsˆn Ð A„nhs…dhmoj. Aenesidemus dogmatised also regarding number and time and unity of the original world-stuff.263 He seems to have dogmatised further about motion,264 and about the soul.265 If Sextus' language is taken according to its apparent meaning, we find ourselves here in the presence of a system of beliefs which would be naturally held by a follower of the Stoic- Heraclitan physics,266 and absolutely inexplicable from the standpoint of a man who advocated so radical a Scepticism as

259 Hyp. I. 180. 260 Photius 170, B. 12. 261 Adv. Math. VIII. 40. 262 Adv. Math. X. 233. 263 Adv. Math. IX. 337; X. 216. 264 Adv. Math. X. 38. 265 Adv. Math. VII. 349. 266 Compare Zeller Op. cit. III. p. 33.


Aenesidemus. Sextus in the passage that we first quoted,267 expresses great indignation against the idea that Scepticism could form the path to the philosophy of Heraclitus, but he does not express surprise or indignation against Aenesidemus personally, or offer any explanation of the apparent contradiction; and while his writings abound in references to him as a respected leader of the Sceptical School, he sometimes seems to include him with the Dogmatics, mentioning him with the dogmatikîn filosÒfwn.268 In fact, the task of presenting any consistent history of the development of thought through which Aenesidemus passed is such a puzzling one, that Brochard brilliantly remarks that possibly the best attitude to take towards it would be to follow the advice of Aenesidemus himself, and suspend one's judgment altogether regarding it. Is it possible to suppose that so sharp and subtle a thinker as Aenesidemus held at the same time such opposing opinions? The conjecture that he was first a Heraclitan Stoic, and later a Sceptic, which might be possible, does not offer any explanation of Sextus' statement, that he regarded Scepticism as a path to the philosophy of Heraclitus. Nor would it be logical to think that after establishing the Sceptical School in renewed influence and power, he reverted to the Heraclitan theories as they were modified by the Stoics. These same theories were the cause of his separation from the Academy, for his chief accusation against the Academy was that it was adopting the dogmatism of the Stoics.269 The matter is complicated by the fact that Tertullian also attributes to Aenesidemus anthropological and physical teachings that agree with the Stoical Heraclitan doctrines. It is not strange that in view of these contradictory assertions in regard to the same man, some have suggested the possibility that they referred to two different men of

267 Hyp. I. 210-212. 268 Adv. Math. VIII. 8; X. 215. 269 Compare Zeller Op. cit. III. p. 16.

65 the same name, a supposition, however, that no one has been able to authoritatively vindicate. Let us consider briefly some of the explanations which have been attempted of the apparent heresy of Aenesidemus towards the Sceptical School. We will begin with the most ingenious, that of Pappenheim.270 Pappenheim claims that Sextus was not referring to Aenesidemus himself in these statements which he joins with his name. In the most important of these, the one quoted from the Hypotyposes,271 which represents Aenesidemus as claiming that Scepticism is the path to the philosophy of Heraclitus, the expression used is oƒ perˆ tÕn A„nhs…dhmon, and in many of the other places where Sextus refers to the dogmatic statements of Aenesidemus, the expression is either oƒ perˆ tÕn A„nhs…dhmon, or A„nhs…dhmoj kaq' `Hr£kleiton, while when Sextus quotes Aenesidemus to sustain Scepticism, he uses his name alone. Pappenheim thinks that Sextus' conflict was not with the dead Aenesidemus, who had lived two centuries before him, but with his own contemporaries. He also seeks to prove that Sextus could not have gained his knowledge of these sayings of Aenesidemus from any of Aenesidemus' own writings, as neither by the ancients, nor by later writers, was any book spoken of which could well have contained them. Neither Aristocles nor Diogenes mentions any such book. Pappenheim also makes much of the argument that Sextus in no instance seems conscious of inconsistency on the part of Aenesidemus, even when most earnestly combating his alleged teachings, but in referring to him personally he always speaks of him with great respect. Pappenheim suggests, accordingly, that the polemic of Sextus was against contemporaries, those who accepted the

270 Die angebliche Heraclitismus des Skeptikers Ainesidemos, Berlin 1889. 271 Hyp. I. 210-212.

66 philosophy of Heraclitus in consequence of, or in some connection with, the teachings of Aenesidemus. He entirely ignores the fact that there is no trace of any such school or sect in history, calling themselves followers of “Aenesidemus according to Heraclitus,” but still thinks it possible that such a movement existed in Alexandria at the time of Sextus, where so many different sects were found. Sextus use Aenesidemus' name in four different ways: – alone, oƒ perˆ tÕn A„nes…dhmon, A„nes…dhmoj kaq' `Hr£kleiton, and in one instance oƒ perˆ tÕn A„nes…dhmon kaq' `Hr£kleiton.272 Pappenheim advances the theory that some of these contemporaries against whom Sextus directed his arguments had written a book entitled A„nes…dhmoj kaq' `Hr£kleiton, to prove the harmony between Aenesidemus and Heraclitus, and that it was from this book that Sextus quoted the dogmatic statements which he introduced with that formula. He claims, further, that the passage quoted from Hypotyposes I. even, is directed against contemporaries, who founded their system of proofs of the harmony between Aenesidemus and Heraclitus on the connection of the celebrated formula which was such a favourite with the Sceptics: “Contrary predicates appear to apply to the same thing,” with the apparent deduction from this, that “Contrary predicates in reality apply to the same thing.” Sextus wishes, according to Pappenheim, to prove to these contemporaries that they had misunderstood Aenesidemus, and Sextus does not report Aenesidemus to be a Dogmatic, nor to have taught the doctrines of Heraclitus; neither has he misunderstood Aenesidemus, nor consequently misrepresented him; but on the contrary, these dogmatic quotations have nothing to do with Aenesidemus, but refer altogether to contemporaries who pretended to be Sceptics while they accepted the teachings of Heraclitus. Sextus naturally warmly combats this tendency, as he wishes to preserve Pyrrhonism pure.

272 Adv. Math. VIII. 8.


Brochard advocates a change of opinion on the part of Aenesidemus as an explanation of the difficulty in question.273 He starts from the supposition, the reasonableness of which we shall consider later, that Aenesidemus had passed through one change of opinion already when he severed his connection with the New Academy; and to the two phases of his life, which such a change has already made us familiar with, he adds a third. Aenesidemus would not be the first who has accepted different beliefs at different periods of his life, and Brochard claims that such a development in the opinions of Aenesidemus is logical. He does not accuse Aenesidemus of having, as might seem from the perusal of Sextus, suddenly changed his basis, but rather of having gradually come to accept much in the teachings of Heraclitus. Aenesidemus modifies his Scepticism only to the extent of pretending to know something of absolute reality. The Sceptic says, “Contradictory predicates are apparently applicable to the same thing,” and Aenesidemus accepts the Heraclitan result – “Contradictory predicates are in reality applicable to the same thing.” From Sextus' report, Aenesidemus would seem to have renounced his position as a Sceptic in saying that Scepticism is the path to the philosophy of Heraclitus. He does not, however, renounce Scepticism, but he finds it incomplete. In deliberating concerning the appearance of contradictory predicates in regard to the same object, he would naturally ask, “Whence come these contradictory appearances?” After having doubted all things, he wished to know wherefore he doubts. The system of Heraclitus offers a solution, and he accepts it. Contradictory predicates produce equilibrium in the soul because they are an expression of reality. As a Sceptic he claims that knowledge is impossible, and he does not find that the statement of Heraclitus disproves this, but rather that it supports his theory. He had denied the existence of science. He still does so, but now he knows why he denies it. Brochard asks why it is any more impossible that Aenesidemus

273 Brochard Op. cit. 272.

68 should have been a follower of Heraclitus than that Protagoras was so, as Protagoras was after all a Sceptic. In conclusion, Brochard claims that the dogmatic theories attributed to Aenesidemus relate to the doctrine of the truth of contradictory predicates, which seemed to him a logical explanation of the foundation theories of Scepticism. It is right to call him a Sceptic, for he was so, and that sincerely; and he deserves his rank as one of the chiefs of the Sceptical School. Coming now to the opinion of Zeller,274 we find that he advocates a misconception of Aenesidemus on the part of Sextus. The whole difficulty is removed, Zeller thinks, by the simple fact that Sextus had not understood Aenesidemus; and as Tertullian and Sextus agree in this misconception of the views of Aenesidemus, they must have been misled by consulting a common author in regard to Aenesidemus, who confused what Aenesidemus said of Heraclitus with his own opinion. Zeller maintains that the expression so often repeated by Sextus – A„nes…dhmoj kaq' `Hr£kleiton – shows that some one of Aenesidemus' books contained a report of Heraclitus' doctrines, as Aenesidemus was in the habit of quoting as many authorities as possible to sustain his Scepticism. To justify his quotations from Heraclitus, he had possibly given a short abstract of Heraclitus' teachings; and the misconception advocated by Zeller and found both in Tertullian and Sextus, refers rather to the spirit than to the words quoted from Aenesidemus, and is a misconception due to some earlier author, who had given a false impression of the meaning of Aenesidemus in quoting what Aenesidemus wrote about Heraclitus. That is to say, Heraclitus was classed by Aenesidemus only among those who prepared the way for Scepticism, just as Diogenes275 mentions many philosophers in that way; and that Soranus276 and Sextus both had

274 Zeller Op. cit. III, pp. 31-35; Grundriss der Geschichte der Griechischen Phil. p. 263. 275 Diog. Laert. IX. 11, 71-74. 276 Tertullian.

69 the same misunderstanding can only be explained by a mistake on the part of the authority whom they consulted. This explanation, however, makes Sextus a very stupid man. Aenesidemus' books were well known, and Sextus would most certainly take the trouble to read them. His reputation as an historian would not sustain such an accusation, as Diogenes calls his books t¦ dška tîn skeptikîn kaˆ ¥lla k£llista277 Furthermore, that Sextus used Aenesidemus' own books we know from the direct quotation from them in regard to Plato,278 which he combines with the ideas of Menodotus279 and his own. Sextus' references to Aenesidemus in connection with Heraclitus are very numerous, and it is absurd to suppose that he would have trusted entirely to some one who reported him for authority on such a subject. Even were it possible that Sextus did not refer directly to the works of Aenesidemus, which we do not admit, even then, there had been many writers in the Sceptical School since the time of Aenesidemus, and they certainly could not all have misrepresented him. We must remember that Sextus was at the head of the School, and had access to all of its literature. His honor would not allow of such a mistake, and if he had indeed made it, his contemporaries must surely have discovered it before Diogenes characterised his books as k£llista. Whatever may be said against the accuracy of Sextus as a general historian of philosophy, especially in regard to the older schools, he cannot certainly be accused of ignorance respecting the school of which he was at that time the head. The opinion of Ritter on this subject is that Aenesidemus must have been a Dogmatic.280 Saisset contends281 that Aenesidemus really passed from the philosophy of Heraclitus to that

277 Diog. IX. 12, 116. 278 Hyp. I. 222. 279 Following the Greek of Bekker. 280 Ritter, Op. cit. p. 280. Book IV. 281 Saisset, Op. cit. p. 206.

70 of Pyrrho, and made the statement that Scepticism is the path to the philosophy of Heraclitus to defend his change of view, although in his case the change had been just the opposite to the one he defends. Saisset propounds as a law in the history of philosophy a fact which he claims to be true, that Scepticism always follows sensationalism, for which he gives two examples, Pyrrho, who was first a disciple of Democritus, and Hume, who was a disciple of Locke It is not necessary to discuss the absurdity of such a law, which someone has well remarked would involve an a priori construction of history. There is no apparent reason for Saisset's conjecture in regard to Aenesidemus, for it is exactly the opposite of what Sextus has reported. Strange to say, Saisset himself remarks in another place that we owe religious respect to any text, and that it should be the first law of criticism to render this.282 Such respect to the text of Sextus, as he himself advocates, puts Saisset's explanation of the subject under discussion out of the question. Hirzel and Natorp do not find such a marked contradiction in the two views presented of the theories of Aenesidemus, nor do they think that Sextus has misrepresented them. They rather maintain, that in declaring the coexistence of contradictory predicates regarding the same object, Aenesidemus does not cease to be a Sceptic, for he did not believe that the predicates are applicable in a dogmatic sense of the word, but are only applicable in appearance, that is, applicable to phenomena. The Heraclitism of Aenesidemus would be then only in appearance, as he understood the statement, that “Contradictory predicates are in reality applicable to the same thing,” only in the phenomenal sense.283 Hirzel says in addition, that contradictory predicates are in reality applicable to those phenomena which are the same for all, and consequently true, for Aenesidemus considered those phenomena true that are the same

282 Saisset Op. cit. p. 206. 283 Natorp Op. cit. 115, 122.

71 for all.284 As Protagoras, the disciple of Heraclitus, declared the relative character of sensations, that things exist only for us, and that their nature depends on our perception of them; so, in the phenomenal sense, Aenesidemus accepts the apparent fact that contradictory predicates in reality apply to the same thing. This explanation entirely overlooks the fact that we have to do with the word Øp£rcein, in the statement that contradictory predicates in reality apply to the same thing; while in the passage quoted where Aenesidemus declares common phenomena to be true ones, we have the word ¢lhqÁ, so that this explanation of the difficulty would advocate a very strange use of the word Ùp£rcein. All of these different views of the possible solution of this perplexing problem are worthy of respect, as the opinion of men who have given much thought to this and other closely Belated subjects. While we may not altogether agree with any one of them, they nevertheless furnish many suggestions, which are very valuable in helping to construct a theory on the subject that shall satisfactorily explain the difficulties, and present a consistent view of the attitude of Aenesidemus. First, in regard to the Greek expression oƒ perˆ in connection with proper names, upon which Pappenheim bases so much of his argument. All Greek scholars would agree that the expression does not apply usually only to the disciples of any teacher, but oˆ perˆ tÕn A„nhs…dhmon, for instance, includes Aenesidemus with his followers, and is literally translated, “Aenesidemus and his followers.” It is noticeable, however, in the writings of Sextus that he uses the expression oˆ perˆ often for the name of the founder of a school alone, as Pappenheim himself admits.285 We find examples of this in the mention of Plato and Democritus and , as oˆ perˆ tÕn Pl£twna kaˆ

284 Adv. Math. VIII. 8; Hirzel Op. cit. p. 95. 285 Pappenheim Op. cit. p. 21.


DhmÒkriton 286 and oˆ perˆ tÕn 'Arkes…laon,287 and accordingly we have no right to infer that his use of the name Aenesidemus in this way has an exceptional significance. It may mean Aenesidemus alone, or it may signify Aenesidemus in connection with his followers. In reply to Zeller's position, that Sextus and Tertullian have misunderstood Aenesidemus, and quote from some common author who misrepresents him, we would admit that such a misunderstanding might be possible where Sextus gives long explanations of Heraclitus' teachings, beginning with quoting Aenesidemus, and continuing in such a way that it is not always possible to distinguish just the part that is attributed to Aenesidemus; but such a misunderstanding certainly cannot be asserted in regard to the direct statement that Aenesidemus regarded Scepticism as the path to the philosophy of Heraclitus, for the reasons previously given. Neither would we agree with Brochard, whose solution of the difficulty is on the whole the most logical, i.e., that Aenesidemus had necessarily already passed through two phases of philosophical belief. It is possible to admit a gradual evolution of thought in Aenesidemus without supposing in either case a change of basis. His withdrawal from the Academy is an argument against, rather than in favor of a change on his part, and was caused by the well-known change in the attitude of the Academy. Many of the teachings of the Sceptical School were taken directly from the Academy, belonging to those doctrines advocated in the Academy before the eclectic dogmatic tendency introduced by Antiochus. In fact, Sextus himself claims a close relation between the Middle Academy and Pyrrhonism.288 Aenesidemus, although he was a Sceptic, belonged to the Academy, and on leaving it became,

286 Adv. Math. VIII. 6. 287 Adv. Math. VII. 150. 288 Hyp. I. 232.

73 as it were, a pioneer in Pyrrhonism, and cannot be judged in the same way as we should judge a Sceptic of Sextus' time. It seems a self-evident fact that during the two centuries which elapsed between the time of Aenesidemus and Sextus, the standpoint of judgment in the Sceptical School had greatly changed. An example illustrating this change we find in a comparison of the presentation of Scepticism by Diogenes with that of Sextus. The author Whom Diogenes follows, probably one of the Sceptical writers, considers , Zeno, and Democritus, Sceptics, and also Plato,289 while Sextus, in regard to all of these men, opposes the idea that they were Sceptics.290 Diogenes also calls Heraclitus a Sceptic, and even Home,291 and quotes sceptical sayings from the Seven Wise Men;292 he includes in the list of Sceptics, Archilochus, , , and Hippocrates,293 and, furthermore, says that Theodosius, probably one of the younger Sceptics, objected to the name 'Pyrrhonean' on the ground that Pyrrho was not the first Sceptic.294 We have given the testimony from many sources to the effect that before the time of Sextus the Empirical School of Medicine was considered identical with Scepticism, although not so by Sextus himself. From all of these things we may infer a narrowing of the limits of Pyrrhonism in the time of Sextus. Let us accept with Brochard the development of thought seen in Aenesidemus from the beginning to the end of his career, without agreeing with him that Aenesidemus ever consciously changed his basis. He was a Sceptic in the Academy. He left the Academy on that account, and he remained a Sceptic to the end, in

289 Diog. IX. 11, 17-72. 290 Hyp. I. 213-214; I. 223-225. 291 Diog. IX. 11, 71. 292 Diog. IX. 11, 71. 293 Diog. IX. 11, 71-73. 294 Diog. IX. 11. 70.

74 so far as a man can be a Sceptic, and take the positive stand that Aenesidemus did. Two things might account for his apparent dogmatism –

(i) The eclectic spirit of his time. (ii) The psychological effect upon himself of this careful systemisation of the Sceptical teachings.

Let us consider the first of these causes. Aenesidemus, although not the first of the later Sceptics, was apparently the first to separate himself from the Academy. He was the founder of a new movement, the attempt to revive the older Scepticism as taught by Pyrrho and Timon, and separate it from the dogmatic teachings of the Stoics which were so greatly affecting the Scepticism of the New Academy. It was the spirit of his time to seek to sustain all philosophical teaching by the authority of as many as possible of the older philosophers, and he could hardly escape the tendency which his training in the Academy had unconsciously given him. Therefore we find him trying to prove that the philosophy of Heraclitus follows from Scepticism. It is not necessary either to explain the matter, as both Hirzel and Natorp so ingeniously attempt to do, by claiming that the truth of contradictory predicates which Aenesidemus accepted from Heraclitus referred only to phenomena. The history of philosophy gives us abundant proof of the impossibility of absolute Scepticism, and Aenesidemus furnishes us with one example of many of this impossibility, and of the dogmatism that must exist in connection with all thought. In the case of Aenesidemus, who evidently gave the best efforts of his life to establish the Sceptical School, the dogmatism was probably unconscious. That he remained to the end a Sceptic is shown by the fact that he was known as such to posterity. Nowhere do we find a change of basis referred to in regard to him, and Sextus, in refuting the mistakes which he attributes to Aenesidemus, does it, as it were,

75 to point out something of which Aenesidemus had been unconscious. Let us consider here the second cause of Aenesidemus' Dogmatism, the psychological effect upon himself of formulating Sceptical beliefs. The work that he did for the Sceptical School was a positive one. It occupied years of his life, and stamped itself upon his mental development. In formulating Scepticism, and in advocating it against the many enemies of the School, and amidst all the excitement of the disruption from the Academy, and of establishing a new School, it was inevitable that his mind should take a dogmatic tendency. He remained a Sceptic as he had always been, but must have grown dogmatic in his attitude towards the Sceptical formulae, and was thus able to adopt some of the teachings of Heraclitus, unconscious of their inconsistency. Where should we find a modern writer who is consistent in all his statements? Could we read the works of Aenesidemus, we might better understand the connection between the apparently contradictory ideas in his teaching, but the inconsistencies in statement would probably remain. It is necessary to remember the position of Aenesidemus in breaking away from the Academy and in founding a new school, the full significance of which he could not foresee. There must necessarily be some crudeness in pioneer work, and some failure to see the bearing of all its parts, and a compiler like Sextus could point out the inconsistencies which the two centuries since the time of Aenesidemus had made plain. Aenesidemus was too positive a character to admit of absolute Sceptical consistency. He was nevertheless the greatest thinker the Sceptical School had known since the age of Pyrrho, its founder. In claiming a union between Pyrrhonism and the philosophy of Heraclitus, he recognised also the pre-Socratic tendency of the Sceptical School. The name of was all powerful in the Academy, but Aenesidemus comprehended the fact that the true

76 spirit of Pyrrhonism was of earlier origin than the Academic Scepsis.

Chapter 5

Critical Examination of Pyrrhonism

The distinct philosophical movement of which Pyrrho was the author bore his name for five centuries after his death. It had an acknowledged existence as a philosophical tendency, if indeed not a sect, for a great part of that time. Yet, when we carefully analyse the relation of Pyrrhonism, as presented to us by Sextus, to the teachings of Pyrrho himself, in so far as they can be known, we find many things in Pyrrhonism for which Pyrrho was not responsible. The foundation elements of the movement, the spirit of Empirical doubt that lay underneath and caused its development in certain directions rather than others, are due to Pyrrho. The methods of the school, however, were very foreign to anything found in the life or teachings of Pyrrho. Pyrrho was eminently a moralist. He was also to a great degree an ascetic, and he lived his philosophy, giving it thus a positive side wanting in the Pyrrhonism presented to us by Sextus. Timon represents him as desiring to escape from the tedious philosophical discussions of his time –

ð gšron ð PÚrrhwn, pîj pÒqen œkdusin eárej latre…hj doxîn te kenofrosÚnhj te sofistîn; and again he speaks of his modest and tranquil life –

toàtÒ moi, ð PÚrrhwn, ƒme…retai Ãtor ¢koîsai pîj pÒt' ¢n¾r œt' ¥geij p£nta meq' ¹suc…hj moànoj d'anqrèpoisi qeoî trÒpon »gemoneÚeij ..... fÍsta meq' ¹suc…hj a„eˆ ¢front…stwj kaˆ ¢kin»twj kat¦ taàta 78

m¾ prÒsec' „ndalmo‹j ¹dulÒgou sÒfihj.295

Pyrrho wished more than anything else to live in peace, and his dislike of the Sophists296 may well have made him try to avoid dialectic; while, on the contrary, in the Pyrrhonean School of later times discussion was one of the principal methods of contest, at least after the time of Agrippa. Pyrrhonism seems to have been originally a theory of life, like the philosophy of Socrates, to whom Pyrrho is often compared,297 and Pyrrho, like Socrates, lived his philosophy. Our knowledge of Pyrrho is gained from Aristocles, Sextus Empiricus, and Diogenes, and from the Academic traditions given by Cicero. Diogenes gives us details of his life which he attributes to Antigonus of Carystius, who lived about the time of Pyrrho.298 Pyrrho was a disciple and admirer of Democritus,299 some of whose teachings bore a lasting influence over the subsequent development of Pyrrhonism. He accompanied to India, where he remained as a member of his suite for some time, and the philosophical ideas of India were not without influence on his teachings. Oriental philosophy was not unknown in Greece long before the time of Pyrrho, but his personal contact with the Magi and the Gymnosophists of the far East, apparently impressed upon his mind teachings for which he was not unprepared by his previous study and natural disposition. In his indifference to worldly goods we find a strong trace of the Buddhistic teaching regarding the vanity of human life. He showed also a similar hopelessness in regard to the possibility of finding a satisfactory philosophy, or absolute truth. He evidently returned from India with the conviction that truth was not to be attained.300

295 Diog. IX. 11, 65. Given from Mullach's edition of Timon by Brochard, Pyrrhon et le Scepticism primitive, p. 525. 296 Diog. IX. 11, 69. 297 Lewes Op. cit. p. 460. 298 Diog. IX. 11, 62. 299 Diog. IX. 11, 67. 300 Compare Maccoll Op. cit.


After the death of Alexander and Pyrrho's return to Greece, he lived quietly with his sister at Elis, and Diogenes says that he was consistent in his life, asserting and denying nothing, but in everything withholding his opinion, as nothing in itself is good or shameful, just or unjust.301 He was not a victim of false pride, but sold animals in the market place, and, if necessary, washed the utensils himself.302 He lived in equality of spirit, and practised his teachings with serenity. If one went out while he was talking he paid no attention, but went calmly on with his remarks.303 He liked to live alone, and to travel alone, and on one occasion, being knocked about in a vessel by a storm at sea, he did not lose his imperturbability, but pointed to a swine calmly eating on board, and said that the wise man should have as much calmness of soul as that. He endured difficult surgical operations with indifference,304 and when his friend was once unfortunate enough to fall into a morass, he went calmly by without stopping to help him, for which consistency of conduct Anaxarchus afterwards praised him. There are two instances given by Diogenes when he lost control of himself; once in getting angry with his sister, and once in trying to save himself when chased by a dog. When accused of inconsistency, he said it was difficult to entirely give up one's humanity.305 He was greatly venerated by the people among whom he lived, who made him high priest, and on his account exempted all philosophers from taxation,306 and after his death erected a statue to his memory. These facts testify to his moral character, and also to fulfil the functions of high priest a certain amount of dogmatism must have been necessary.

301 Diog. IX. 11, 61, 62. 302 Diog. IX. 11, 66. 303 Diog. IX. 11, 63. 304 Diog. IX. 11, 67. 305 Diog. IX. 11, 66. 306 Diog. IX. 11, 64.


According to Diogenes, “We cannot know,” said Pyrrho, “what things are in themselves, either by sensation or by judgment, and, as we cannot distinguish the true from the false, therefore we should live impassively, and without an opinion.” The term ™poc», so characteristic of Pyrrhonism, goes back, according to Diogenes, to the time of Pyrrho.307 Nothing is, in itself, one thing more than another, but all experience is related to phenomena, and no knowledge is possible through the senses.308 Pyrrho's aim was ¢tarax…a and his life furnished a marked example of the spirit of indifference, for which the expression ¢p£qeia is better suited than the later one, ¢tarax…a. The description of his life with his sister confirms this, where the term ¢diafor…a is used to describe his conduct.309 He founded his Scepticism on the equivalence of opposing arguments.310 The picture given of Pyrrho by Cicero is entirely different from that of Diogenes, and contrasts decidedly with it.311 Cicero knows Pyrrho as a severe moralist, not as a Sceptic. Both authors attribute to Pyrrho the doctrine of indifference and apathy, but, according to Cicero, Pyrrho taught of virtue, honesty, and the summum bonum, while Diogenes plainly tells us that he considered nothing as good in itself, “and of all things nothing as true.”312 Cicero does not once allude to Pyrrhonean doubt. We see on the one hand, in Cicero's idea of Pyrrho, the influence of the Academy, perhaps even of Antiochus himself,313 which probably colored the representations given of Pyrrho; but, on the other hand, there is much in Diogenes' account of Pyrrho's life and teachings, and in the writings of Timon, which shows us the positive side of Pyrrho. Pyrrho, in denying the possibility of all knowledge, made that rather

307 Diog. IX. 11, 61. 308 Diog. IX. 11, 61-62. 309 Diog. IX. 11. 66. 310 Diog. IX. 11. 106. 311 De orat. III, 62. 312 Diog. IX. 11, 61. 313 Compare Natorp Op. cit. p. 71.

81 a motive for indifference in the relations of life, than the foundation thought of a philosophical system. His teaching has a decided ethical side, showing in that respect the strong influence of Democritus over him, who, like Pyrrho, made happiness to consist in a state of feeling.314 The one motive of all of Pyrrho's teaching is a positive one, the desire for happiness. The essence of Pyrrhonism as given by Timon is as follows:315 Man desires to be happy. To realise his desire he must consider three things: (i) What is the nature of things? (ii) How should man conduct himself in relation to them? (iii) What is the result to him of this relation?

The nature of things is unknown. Our relation to them must be one of suspension of judgment, without activity, desire, or belief, – entirely negative relation. The result is that state of having no opinion, called ™poc», which is followed in turn by ¢tarax…a. The problem of philosophy316 is here proposed very nearly in the terms of Kant, but not with the positive motive, like that of the great philosopher of Germany, of evolving a system to present the truth. Yet the importance of these questions shows the originality of Pyrrho. The earnestness of Pyrrho is further shown by an example given by Diogenes. Once on being found talking to himself alone, he said, when asked the reason, that he was meditating how to become a good man (crhstÒj) thus showing an entirely different spirit from anything found in Sextus' books. The explanation of his life and teachings is to be found largely in his own disposition. Such an attitude of indifference must belong to a placid nature, and cannot be entirely the result of a philosophical system, and, while it can be

314 Zeller Grundriss der Griechischen Phil. p. 70. 315 Aristocles ap. Eusebium Praep. Ev. XIV. 18. 316 Compare Maccoll Op. cit. p. 21.

82 aimed at, it can never be perfectly imitated. One of his disciples recognised this, and said that it was necessary to have the disposition of Pyrrho in order to hold his doctrines.317 Diogenes tells us that he was the first to advance any formulae of Scepticism,318 but they must have been very elementary, as Pyrrho himself wrote nothing. We find no trace of formulated Tropes in Pyrrho's teachings, yet it is probable that he indicated some of the contradictions in sensation, and possibly the Tropes in some rudimentary form. Of the large number of sceptical formulae, or fwna… the three which seem to have the oldest connection with Scepticism are the ¢ntilog…a, the oÙdn Ðr…zô, and the oÙ m©llon.319 We know from Diogenes that Protagoras is the authority for saying that in regard to everything there are two opposing arguments.320 The saying “to determine nothing” is quoted from Timon's Python by Diogenes,321 and the other two mentioned are also attributed to him by Aristocles.322 We have also in the oÙ m©llon a direct connection with Democritus, although the difference in the meaning which he attributed to it is shown by Sextus.323 So while the expression is the same, the explanation of it given by Pyrrho must have been different. It would seem probable that Pyrrho used all of these three sayings, from the account of Diogenes, and that even then they gave rise to the accusation of the Dogmatics, that simply by possessing such sayings the Sceptics dogmatised,324 for the refutation of this used by Sextus occurs in the old account of the sayings, namely, that these formulae include also

317 Diog. IX. 11, 70, 64. 318 Diog. IX. 11, 69; IX. 11, 61. 319 Hyp. I. 202; Diog. IX. 8, 51; Photius Bekker's ed. 280 H. 320 Hyp. I. 197; Diog. IX. 11, 76. 321 Hyp. I. 197; Diog. IX. 11, 76. 322 Aristocles ap. Eusebium, Praep. Ev. XIV. 18. 323 Hyp. I. 213. 324 Diog. IX. 11, 68-76.

83 themselves in the meaning, as a cathartic removes itself together with other harmful objects.325 In comparing the later Pyrrhonism with the teachings of Pyrrho, we would sharply contrast the moral attitude of the two. With Pyrrho equilibrium of soul was a means to be applied to his positive theory of life; with the later Pyrrhoneans it was the end to be attained. We would attribute, however, the empirical tendency shown during the whole history of Pyrrhonism to Pyrrho as its originator. He was an empirical philosopher, and the result of his influence in this respect, as seen in the subsequent development of the school, stands in marked contrast to the dialectic spirit of the Academic Scepsis. The empiricism of the school is shown in its scientific lore, in the fact that so many of the Sceptics were physicians, and in the character of the ten Tropes of ™poc». We may safely affirm that the foundation principles of Pyrrhonism are due to Pyrrho, and the originality which gave the school its power. The elaborated arguments, however, and the details of its formulae belong to later times. Coming now to the relation of Pyrrhonism to the Academy, the connection between the two is difficult to exactly determine, between the time of Pyrrho and that of Aenesidemus. Scepticism in the Academy was, however, never absolutely identical with Pyrrhonism, although at certain periods of the history of the Academy the difference was slight. We can trace throughout the evolution of doubt, as shown to us in Pyrrhonism, and in Academic Scepticism, the different results which followed the difference in origin of the two movements, and these differences followed according to general laws of development of thought. Arcesilaus, who introduced doubt into the Academy, claimed to return to the dialectic of Socrates, and suppressing the lectures,326 which were the method of teaching in the later schools of philosophy, introduced

325 Diog. IX. 11, 76; Hyp. I. 206. 326 Compare Maccoll Op. cit. p. 36.

84 discussions instead, as being more decidedly a Socratic method. Although, according to Sextus, he was the one leader of the Academy whose Scepticism most nearly approached that of Pyrrhonism,327 yet underneath his whole teaching lay that dialectic principle so thoroughly in opposition to the empiricism of Pyrrho. The belief of Socrates and Plato in the existence of absolute truth never entirely lost its influence over the Academy, but was like a hidden germ, destined to reappear after Scepticism had passed away. It finally led the Academy back to Dogmatism, and prepared the way for the Eclecticism with which it disappeared from history. The history of Pyrrhonism and that of Academic Scepticism were for a time contemporaneous. The immediate follower of Pyrrho, Timon, called by Sextus the “prophet of Pyrrho,”328 was a contemporary of Arcesilaus. That he did not consider the Scepticism of the Academy identical with Pyrrhonism is proved from the fact that he did not himself join the Academy, but was, on the contrary, far from doing so. That he regarded Arcesilaus as a Dogmatic is evident from his writings.329 One day, on seeing the chief of the Academy approaching, he cried out, “What are you doing here among us who are free?”330 After the death of Timon, the Pyrrhonean School had no representative till the time of Ptolemy of Cyrene,331 and Greek Scepticism was represented by the Academy. That Pyrrho had a strong influence over Arcesilaus, the founder of the Middle Academy, is evident332; but there was also never a time when the Academy entirely broke away from all the teachings of Plato, even in their deepest doubt.333 It is true that Arcesilaus removed, nominally as well as in spirit, some of the dialogues of Plato from the Academy, but only those that bore a dogmatic

327 Hyp. I. 232. 328 Adv. Math. I. 53. 329 Diog. IV. 6, 33, 34. 330 Diog. IX. 12, 114. 331 Diog. IX. 12, 115. 332 Diog. IV. 6, 33. 333 Diog. IV. 6, 32.

85 character, while those that presented a more decided Socratic mode of questioning without reaching any decided result, men regarded as authority for Scepticism. Sextus does not deny that Arcesilaus was almost a Pyrrhonean, but he claims that his Pyrrhonism was only apparent, and not real, and was used as a cloak to hide his loyalty to the teachings of Plato.334 As Ariston said of him,335 “Plato before, Pyrrho behind, Diodorus in the middle.” Sextus also characterises the method of Arcesilaus as dialectic,336 and we know from Cicero that it was his pride to pretend to return to the dialectic of Socrates. It is interesting to note that Sextus, in his refutation of the position that the Academy is the same as Pyrrhonism, takes up the entire development of Academic thought from the time of Plato till that of Antiochus, and does not limit the argument to Scepticism under Arcesilaus. The claim made by some that the two schools were the same, is stated by him,337 and the word 'some' probably refers to members of both schools at different periods of their history. Sextus recognises three , although he remarks that some make even a further division, calling that of and Charmides, the fourth, and that of Antiochus and his followers, the fifth. That many in the Academy, and even outside of it, regarded Plato as a Sceptic, and an authority for subsequent Scepticism, we find both from Sextus and Diogenes.338 As Lewes justly remarks, one could well find authority for Scepticism in the works of Plato, as indeed the Academicians did, but not when the sum total of his teachings was considered. The spirit of Plato's teachings was dogmatic, as Sextus most decidedly recognises, and as Aenesidemus

334 Hyp. I. 234. 335 Diog. IV. 6, 33. 336 Hyp. I. 234. 337 Hyp. I. 220. 338 Hyp. I. 221; Diog. IX. 11, 72.

86 and Menodotus339 recognised before him.340 Sextus himself shows us that Plato's idealism and ethical teachings can have nothing in common with Scepticism, for if he accepts the desirability of the virtuous life, and the existence of Providence, he dogmatises; and if he even regards them as probable, he gives preference to one set of ideas over another, and departs from the sceptical character. Sextus characterises the sceptical side of Plato's writings as mental gymnastics,341 which do not authorise his being called a Sceptic, and affirms that Plato is not a Sceptic, since he prefers some unknown things to others in trustworthiness. The ethical difference underlying the teachings of the Academy and Pyrrhonism, Sextus was very quick to see, and although it is very probable that the part of the Hypotyposes which defines the difference between the Academy and Pyrrhonism may be largely quoted from the introduction to Aenesidemus' works, yet Sextus certainly gives these statements the strong stamp of his approval. He condemns the Academy because of the theory that good and evil exist, or if this cannot be decidedly proved, yet that it is more probable that what is called good exists than the contrary.342 The whole Academic teaching of probabilities contradicted the standpoint of the Sceptics – that our ideas are equal as regards trustworthiness and untrustworthiness,343 for the Academicians declared that some ideas are probable and some improbable, and they make a difference even in those ideas that they call probable. Sextus claims that there are three fundamental grounds of difference between Pyrrhonism and the Academy. The first is the doctrine of probability which the Academicians accept in regard to the superior trustworthiness of some ideas over others.344 The

339 Bekker's edition of Hyp. I. 222. 340 Hyp. I. 222. 341 Hyp. I. 223. 342 Hyp. I. 226. 343 Hyp. I. 227. 344 Hyp. I. 229.

87 second is the different way in which the two schools follow their teachers. The Pyrrhoneans follow without striving or strong effort, or even strong inclination, as a child follows his teacher, while the Academicians follow with sympathy and assent, as and Clitomachus affirm.345 The third difference is in the aim, for the Academicians follow what is probable in life. The Sceptics follow nothing, but live according to laws, customs, and natural feelings undogmatically.346 The difference between the later teaching of the Academy and Pyrrhonism is evident, and Sextus treats of it briefly, as not requiring discussion,347 as Philo taught that the nature of facts is incomprehensible, and Antiochus transferred the Stoa to the Academy. It is therefore evident, from the comparison which we have made, that we do not find in the Academy, with which Scepticism after the death of Timon was so long united, the exact continuance of Pyrrhonism. The philosophical enmity of the two contemporaries, Timon and Arcesilaus, the Academician who had most in common with Pyrrhonism, is an expression of the fundamental incompatibility between the two schools. During all the chequered history of the Academy the dormant idealism was there, underlying the outward development. Although during the time of Arcesilaus and Carneades the difference was so slight as to seem a mere matter of form of expression, yet the different foundations on which the two schools stood was always recognisable. On the one hand there was the germ of idealism which was destined to awake to a new life, and on the other, the attempt at absolute negation which was to result in the final extinction of Pyrrhonism. We find in both, it is true, especially in the time of Arcesilaus, the aim of ™poc».348 Both placed great weight on

345 Hyp. I. 230. 346 Hyp. I. 231. 347 Hyp. I. 235. 348 Hyp. I. 232.


„sosqšneia, or the equal value of opposing arguments.349 The foundation of the ™poc» was, however, different in the two cases. Arcesilaus founded his on dialectic, while Pyrrho's was empirical. The Pyrrhonean believed that ideas give us no knowledge of the outer world; the Academic Sceptic believed that we cannot distinguish between true and false ideas, so such knowledge is impossible. The Pyrrhonean denied that truth could exist in ideas because of their contradictory nature, and consequently the existence of all truth, mhdn enai tÍ ¢lhqe…v ™pˆ p£ntwn.350 The Academic Sceptic granted that the truth was possibly contained in ideas, but affirmed that it could never be known to us. The Pyrrhoneans prided themselves on still being seekers, for although ordinary ideas are too contradictory to give knowledge of the outer world, they did not deny that such knowledge might be possible, but simply suspended the judgment regarding it. To the Pyrrhonean the result corresponded to the method. All ideas thus far known revealed nothing of the truth, therefore he still sought. The Academician tried logically to prove that the truth is impossible to find. It is the relation of the dialectician to the empiricist, and the two varieties of Scepticism are explained by their difference in origin. In Pyrrhonism there was no constructive element. In the Academic Scepsis such an element was found throughout all its history in the theory of Probability. Arcesilaus himself laid great stress upon this doctrine, which Sextus carefully shows us351 is utterly inconsistent with Pyrrhonism. Arcesilaus plainly teaches that, having suspended one's judgment in regard to matters of knowledge, one should control his choices, his refusals, and his actions by the probable.352 After Antiochus introduced Eclecticism into the Academy, Pyrrhonism was the only representative of Greek Scepticism, and it

349 Diog. IX. 73; Hyp. II. 130; III. 65. 350 Diog. IX. 11, 61. 351 Hyp. I. 229. 352 Compare Maccoll Op. cit. 39.

89 flourished for over two centuries after our era, and then also disappeared, no more to exist as a regular philosophical school. Having considered at length the essence of Pyrrhonism as presented by Sextus Empiricus, it now remains to briefly note the characteristics that formed its strength and weakness, and the causes of its final downfall. Herbart says that every philosopher is a Sceptic in the beginning, but every Sceptic remains always in the beginning. This remark may well be applied to Pyrrhonism. We find in its teachings many fundamental philosophical which might have formed the beginning of great philosophical progress, but which were never developed to any positive results. The teachings of Pyrrhonism were some of them well fitted to prepare the way to idealism. The great idea of the relativity of Vorstellungen is made very prominent by the ten Tropes of ™poc». Aenesidemus, in his eight Tropes against aetiology, shows the absurdity of the doctrine of causality when upheld on materialistic grounds. That was to him final, ™peˆ oÙk œstai a‡tion He could not divine that although the result which he presented was logical, it only led to a higher truth. It was reserved for the greatest of modern philosophers to reveal to the world that causality is a condition, and a necessary condition, of thought. When Aenesidemus proved by his seventh Trope that causality is subjective, he regarded it as fatal to the doctrine; yet this conclusion was a marked step in advance in critical philosophy, although Aenesidemus could not himself see it in all its bearings. The great difference between Aenesidemus and Kant is the difference between the materialist and the believer in subjective reality. Both agreed in the unknown nature of the Ding an sich, but this was to the Pyrrhonist the end of all his philosophy; to Kant, however, the beginning. Pyrrhonism has rendered, notwithstanding its points of fatal weakness, marked service to the world in science, philosophy, ethics, and religion. It quickened scientific thought by emphasising empirical methods of investigation, and by criticising all results

90 founded without sufficient data upon false hypotheses. If, instead of denying the possibility of all science because of the want of a criterion of the truth of phenomena, the Pyrrhonists had comprehended the possibility of a science of phenomena, they might have led the world in scientific progress.353 Their service to philosophy lay in the stimulus to thought that their frequent attacks on dogmatic beliefs occasioned. Pyrrhonism brought together all the most prominent theories of the old schools of philosophy to test their weakness and expose their contradictions, and this very process of criticism often demonstrated the power of the truth which they contained. Sextus Empiricus was often charged by the Church Fathers with corrupting religious belief, and yet the greatest service which Pyrrhonism has rendered the world was in religious and ethical lines. This service did not, naturally, consist in destroying belief in absolute truth, as the Sceptic professed to do, but in preparing the way to find it. The bold attacks of Scepticism on all truth led men to investigate ethical and religious teachings, to examine the grounds of their belief, and to put in practical use the right of reason and free discussion. Scepticism was the antecedent of freedom of conscience and rational criticism,354 and the absolute right of scientific thought. The Sceptics, however, reaped none of the benefits of their own system. They remained, as it were, always on the threshold of possible progress. With the keys to great discoveries in their hands, the doors of philosophical and scientific advancement were for ever closed to them by the limitations of their own system. The inherent weakness of Pyrrhonism lay in its psychological inconsistency and in its negative character. I think that we may safely say that Pyrrhonism was the most consistent system of Scepticism ever offered to the world, and yet it proves most decidedly that complete Scepticism is

353 Compare Lewes Op. cit. p. 463. 354 Compare Chaignet Op. cit. p. 460.

91 psychologically impossible. A man may give up his belief in one set of ideas, and, if they are ideas that are popularly accepted, he will be called a Sceptic, as was the case with Hume. He must, however, replace these ideas by others equally positive, and then he is no longer a Sceptic, but a Dogmatic, for he in something. We have shown that the greatest thinkers of Pyrrhonism, Pyrrho, Aenesidemus, and Agrippa, were not examples of absolute Scepticism, and although Sextus Empiricus realised what consistency demanded in this respect, and affirmed on almost every page that he was asserting nothing, yet there is not a paragraph of his books in which he does not, after all, dogmatise on some subject. Complete Scepticism is contrary to the fundamental laws of language, as all use of verbs involves some affirmation. The Pyrrhonists realised this, and therefore some of them wrote nothing, like Pyrrho, their leader, and others advocated afas…a355 as one of the doctrines of their system. # The very aim of Pyrrhonism was an inconsistent one. Atarax…a was only another name for happiness, and in one instance, even, is given as hdonh, and thus, in spite of themselves, the Sceptics introduced a theory of happiness. Pyrrho, like others of his time, sought the highest good, and thought that he had found it in ¢tarax…a, the peace of mind that appears in other systems of philosophy in other forms. The difference of aim between the Pyrrhonists, Stoics, and Epicureans was more apparent than real. To them all philosophy was a path to lead to happiness. The method of Pyrrhonism was, however, negative. Its strength consisted in its attacks on Dogmatism, and not in any positive aim of its own, for its positive side could not be recognised according to its own doctrines. Therefore there was no real development in Pyrrhonism, for a negative thought cannot be developed. We find, accordingly, from the time of Pyrrho to Sextus, no growth in breadth of philosophical outlook, only improvement in

355 Hyp. I. 192.

92 methods. Philosophical activity can never have doubt as its aim, as that would form, as we have shown, a psychological contradiction. The true essence of Pyrrhonism was passivity, but passivity can never lead to progress. Much of the polemical work of Pyrrhonism prepared the way for scientific progress by providing a vast store of scientific data, but progress was to the Pyrrhonists impossible. They sounded their own scientific death-knell by declaring the impossibility of science, and putting an end to all theories. The life of all scientific and philosophic progress is in the attempt to find the hidden truth. To the Sceptic there was no truth, and there could be no progress. As progress is a law in the evolution of the human race, so Scepticism as a philosophy could never be a permanent growth, any more than asceticism in religion can be a lasting influence. Both of them are only outgrowths. As the foundation principles of Scepticism were opposed to anything like real growth, it was a system that could never originate anything. Pyrrho taught from the beginning that the Sceptic must live according to law and custom; not, however, because one law or custom is better than another in itself, but simply for the sake of peace. This basis of action was itself a death-blow to all reform in social or political life. It was a selfish, negative way of seeking what was, after all, a positive thing, the ¢tarax…a that the Sceptic desired. Life with the Pyrrhonist was phenomenal, and not phenomenal simply in regard to the outer world, but also subjectively, and no absolute knowledge of the subjective life or of personal existence was possible. The cause of the downfall of Pyrrhonism lay in the fact that it had nothing to offer to humanity in the place of what it had destroyed. It made no appeal to human sympathies, and ignored all the highest motives to human action. The especial materialistic standpoint from which Pyrrhonism judged all that pertains to knowledge and life shut out the ideal, and all possibility of absolute truth. It was an expression of the philosophic decadence of the age

93 when it flourished, and although it possessed some philosophic worth, yet it bore in itself the causes of its decay.